Sun. Mar 3rd, 2024

Le Baie-Comeau weightlifting club sees red

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The premises, located in the Henry-Leonard center, correspond perfectly to the needs of the Club, according to its members.

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The City of Baie-Comeau is making people unhappy. Around a hundred citizens gathered at the municipal council on Monday to support the Weightlifting Club which will lose its premises next summer as part of the municipal building optimization project. They fear that this move heralds the end of the organization.

The municipal building optimization project aims to reduce the City's expenses by relocating administrative offices and services to municipal premises.

We want put as many people back in our [premises] to avoid renting left and right, justifies the mayor of Baie-Comeau, Michel Desbiens. We made the decision to send the Youth Center to the Henry-Leonard center and to explain to the gym that it had to move to another location.

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The mayor of Baie-Comeau, Michel Desbiens, is asking for an all-out effort world to save money. (File photo)

The Baie-Comeau Weightlifting Club, which has occupied the Léopold-Arsenault room for several years, has changed its vocation over time.

L& #x27;non-profit organization has become a fitness center open to the entire population and, according to the mayor of Baie-Comeau, the Club no longer meets the criteria requested by the City to occupy a building municipal as a priority.

From July 2024, the premises will therefore accommodate the Youth Center rather than the 140 members of the sports hall.

As the Youth Center found itself in a location that did not correspond to its needs, its integration into the Henry-Leonard center is entirely logical and will allow the City of Baie-Comeau to save money nearly $20,000 per year, explains Michel Desbiens in a press release.

At the fitness center, the president of the Weightlifting Club, Maurice Dignard, says his attempts at negotiations to keep his premises have failed.

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Maurice Dignard, president of the Baie-Comeau Weightlifting Club

While his organization's rent is currently $5,000, he offered to triple it, without success.

The mayor is as closed as an oyster. I offered him a win-win formula, protests Maurice Dignard.

The City specifies that it is not asking the Club to completely close its doors, but rather to relocate, which is impossible, according to the weightlifter.

Coming here, for [the members], it was a kind of therapy. Tomorrow morning, if it's gone, they'll miss it, they won't know what to do. We call it a family gym. Here, it’s quite simply a family, he says.

Despite the dissatisfaction that citizens expressed during the municipal council, the mayor emphasizes that this is a final decision. He plans to raise the subject with members of the city council in the coming days.

With information from Catherine Gosselin

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