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Old 2007-04-29
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Field Closures: Jean Chevalier's Article

CLOSURE OF 3 AEROMODELLER CLUBS

IN THE REGION


Subject to a notice of contravention dated 16 March 2006 received from la Commission de Protection du Territoire Agricole du Quebec (CPTAQ) in conjunction with UPA, arising from a complaint from a former modeller, envious of the support received from the local population ensuing from the success level of our social and recreational activities in the municipalities of St-Cyprien-de-Napierville itself, we, the Club Modeliste Mont?r?gie of St-Cyprien-de-Napierville, are at risk of the closure of our flying site.

The CPTAQ prohibits the use of this small parcel of land for the purpose of take-off and landing of radio controlled model aicraft. This piece of the proprietor's land measures 650 feet by 200 feet, is grass lawn, is impeccacly maintained, does no damage whatsoever to this type (2) of land. Also, this represents less the 1% of the proprietor's land, with no permanently installed infrastructure, allowing the return of the land to agricultural use at any time.

Following a meeting on 8 August 2006, with the commissioners of the CPTAQ in the Longueuil Office, to explain the reason for our activities and to inform them that it is an outdoor sport, a family oriented activity for the adept of all ages (we have members from 12 years to 82 years of age). A reply was received a few weeks later categorically refusing permission, since these civil servants must apply the law without any flexibility, or comprehension, even after having explained that we cannot operate model aircraft and helicopters in an urban milieu due to engine noise and the danger of property damage and injury to spectators and members or residents, because only rural or agricultural locations are suitable to our activities.

The other 2 clubs implicated for the same reasons in this dilemma are the <CLUB BROSS'AIR> of Brossard on the south shore of Montreal and the <CLUB LAFAYETTE> situated in Marieville and affecting nearly 400 modellers. In view of the impending disappearance of these three clubs due to to a ruling applied too strictly by the Government, it is clear that it will be felt economically.

A few months ago, we received financial aid from the Minister of sports and leisure of Quebec indicating support for our activities. We have also received a contribution from Model Aeronautics Association of Canada (MAAC) which will be used to defend our case, now before the Tribunal Appellate Court of Quebec against the CPTAQ and if the response is negative from the tribunal, we shall resort to the Supreme Court to assert our rights.

Lately, a coalition at the national and international level (Canada and USA) has presently been formed through Model Aeronautics Association of Canada to collect funds to help the other clubs in Quebec who will also have to defend themselves against competent tribunals.

A press conference will be held within a few weeks at l'Institu A?ronautique de Montreal (rue Chauveau), with the presence of executives from several aeronautics industries such as Bombardier, Pratt & Whitney, Bell Helicopter, etc. since since in the opinion of these people, aero-modelling opens the door for a future generation to a career in the aeronautics industry which has a flagrant lack of qualified employees.

Also, we hope that with the help of all the media we will be successful in alerting Quebec public opinion and the rest of the country by changing certain criteria which are the most rigid and which only exist in Quebec and which were created by le Minist?re de l'Agriculture by forming "la Commission de Protection du Territoire Agricole du Quebec" (CPTAQ) with the unconditional support of l'Union des Protecteurs Agricoles (UPA).

Those who wish to support our cause by making a donation in any amount with respect to this litigation are welcome. In return, we could accord them publicity exposure on our flying field.

In closing, we would like to take this opportunity to invite all the population to come and familiarize themselves of this magnificent family outdoor sport and hobby. We are located at <Grande ligne du rang Double> in the municipality of St-Cyprien-de-Napierville on route 221 sud between Napierville and Lacolle.

Jean Chevalier President
Club Modeliste Mont?r?gie
St-Cyprien-de-Napierville

450-246-4543
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