As the Office de consultation publique de Montréal (OCPM) blows out its 20th candle this year, Ensemble Montréal wishes to underline the dedication of all the commissioners and employees who have been involved in the independent organization over the last two decades. To do so, the party is asking the City of Montreal to recognize the work accomplished by the OCPM and to increase the budget necessary to pursue its primary mission: to gather the opinions of citizens and concerned stakeholders on various subjects.
“The Office de consultation publique de Montréal is today a key element of Montréal’s democracy, where the voice of citizens can be heard without partisanship. It is a valuable tool for our city, allowing us to have the right information on important issues. Its longevity testifies to its relevance for everyone,” said Aref Salem, leader of the Official Opposition at Montreal City Hall.
Since its creation in 2002, it is clear that the OCPM’s mandates have greatly increased and that they have gotten more complex over the years. The duration of consultations is now longer, which means that preparation requires more time. Despite these additional pressures on budgetary resources, the budget of the Office has increased by only $500,000 in 20 years and the salaries of the Commissioners have not increased in 16 years.
The Official Opposition is therefore asking the City of Montreal to increase the OCPM’s annual budget base by at least $750,000, starting with the 2023 budget. This amount should allow the Office to adequately carry out the consultations that will be entrusted to it, to stabilize its number of permanent employees and to offer them better salary conditions.
A motion to this effect will be tabled by the elected officials of Ensemble Montréal at the municipal council on September 19.