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Out with the old, in with the new - MRC Pontiac signs new garbage contract, prepares for dam renos

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Added: Wed, 08/28/2019 - 10:56pm
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Allyson Beauregard

MRC PONTIAC – The MRC Pontiac held a special meeting, August 12 at their headquarters in Campbell’s Bay, to award a new tender for waste management in the region and hear a community development proposal related to the reconstruction of the Bryson dam, set to begin in the fall of 2020.
The tendering process ran from June 26 to July 29 and a committee made up of four MRC employees was formed to evaluate the two bids and later present their results to Council during the special meeting.
After a lengthy in-camera session where the mayors reviewed the two received bids, Campbell’s Bay Ciment (CBC) won the contract with a bid of $258.48 per ton, followed by Location Martin Lalonde at about $364 per ton. According to Warden Jane Toller, CBC is purchasing the Pontiac Transfer Site in Clarendon, although the transaction has yet to be finalized. The term was set at three years, with the option of a two year extension, and the contract began August 18.
Tom Orr Cartage (ToC) held the former waste management contract, at a price of $212 per ton, but after months of sporadic garbage collection and overflowing bins, the MRC Pontiac’s Council of Mayors resolved to terminate the contract during their monthly meeting on June 19. The contract was supposed to end next spring. The Municipality of Pontiac experienced similar woes with ToC and also had to find a new contractor.
“With the rising price of fuel, I think it was difficult for the previous contractor to deliver at that price” said Toller.
With news of frequent equipment failures, staffing shortages and numerous unpaid bills, it wasn’t a shock when ToC declared bankruptcy with debts totaling over
$3.5 million in early August.
Regent Dugas, MRC Pontiac Director of Territory, emphasized the importance
of diversion methods like recycling, composting, and energy-from-waste technologies. “It’s not cheap to manage garbage and the best way to save money would be to reduce [the amount sent to Lachute]. The price will never go down, it will always increase,” he said.
According to Dugas, waste management is costing the MRC over $1,200,000 this year and tonnage seems to be increasing slightly every year; from 4,826 tons in 2018 to a projected 4,900 in 2019.  
Preparing for dam renos
Litchfield resident Roderick Quinn, a representative of Mistay Enterprises, spoke to the mayors about his business’ desire to secure a contract with Hydro Québec to provide local accommodation for the 200 or so workers expected to take part in the reconstruction of the Bryson dam by purchasingthe CLSC and Rafters buildings in Bryson and the Auberge in Portage-du-Fort and converting them into camps for workers.
Mistay Enterprises Inc. is a Cree company based in Mistissini, Québec, which
provides camp establishment services to industries, including hot meals.
“The intent is to centralize accommodations and keep the benefits in [the Bryson area],” said Quinn. After the 2-3 year dam renovation project ends, the goal is to convert the buildings into businesses related to adventure tourism.
Council unanimously voted to support the concept in general. “They would be
bringing new life into existing buildings, and if it benefits two municipalities, it will benefit us all,” said Toller. “We want to keep the workers in the Pontiac and not have them move somewhere else like Renfrew,” she concluded.