School ‘Spring Break’ means lots of activities in Laval

The City of Laval is inviting families everywhere on its territory to take advantage of a multitude of special activities made just for children that the municipality will be offering from Feb. 27 to March 3 during the annual Spring Break from school.

As parents everywhere know all too well, Spring Break can be very challenging because of all the spare time their children have on their hands during this week-long break from school.

“We know just how demanding things can become for families during this challenging period of time,” says Renaud city councillor Seta Topouzian who is coordinating some efforts for this dossier.

“But we also know the extent that access to sports and culture are beneficial from the earliest age. This should not become a financial burden, especially in the context of the current economy. We are therefore very proud to ensure access to a diversified range of activities to young people all over Laval.”

The city is extending an open invitation to all Laval families to visit the municipality’s parks, woods, arenas and indoor pools to get physically active and have fun. In some cases, there are prizes to be won in certain parks where snow fort building contests will be taking place.

There will also be free-skate events and open hockey at several municipal arenas. As well, the city’s library branches will be offering more than 50 activities to youths to feed their imaginations, their creativity and their curiosity.

City appoints a new interim-director general

Members of the City of Laval’s executive-committee recently formalized the appointment of a new interim-director general to replace former director general Jacques Ulysse whose five-year term came to an end.

Ulysse’s temporary replacement, Babak Herischi, has been on the job since Feb. 11. Herischi was the City of Laval’s assistant-director general for infrastructures since 2019.

Regarded as a seasoned administrator and municipal services manager, Herischi has more than 30 years experience in the municipal domain. He has a Bachelor’s degree in business administration from the École des sciences de la gestion at UQAM and completed a number of key projects for the City of Laval.

“With an exceptional record of past experience in workplace administration with prioritization of strategy, he has all my trust to direct the administration during this crucial transition period,” Mayor Stéphane Boyer said in a statement.

According to the city, the process to recruit a new and permanent director general has already begun. The city says the successful candidate will be mandated to implement the strategic vision, Laval 2035, as well as the implementation of the wide range of services provided to the City of Laval’s residents.

Laval files three new legal claims for $9 million

Mayor Stéphane Boyer announced last week that Laval has filed new court claims on money the city alleges was skimmed by crooked contractors working for the municipality during the many years of the Vaillancourt administration.

Some of the claims, according to the mayor, involve questionable land sales, as well as the management of snow dumps. In all, up to six former contractors who had agreements with the City of Laval are being pursued for $9 million alleged to have been stolen from taxpayers.

Since 2013 when the Mouvement lavallois swept into power, replacing former mayor Gilles Vaillancourt’s Parti PRO des Lavallois as the dominant force at Laval city hall, the new administration, first under Mayor Marc Demers followed by Mayor Stéphane Boyer, has managed to claim back $57 million from contractors who were proven to have overcharged or skimmed the city

The city has used the money to establish the Fonds Place-du-Souvenir, a fund that helps provide support for children and teenaged residents from underprivileged families in Laval.

“Corruption and collusion have no place in our society,” said Boyer. “I wish to send this message clearly that our team is still at work. I will be maintaining the same level of pressure with the same sense of urgency to act against these unacceptable practices.”

“The administration of Laval is still actively at work in its ongoing struggle against corruption and states again its determination to be compensated by those persons who took advantage of the people of Lavsal,” added Me Simon Tremblay, head of the City of Laval’s legal affairs department.