By Robert Frank
In an interview with Hela Labene, published Sept. 18, the Beaconsfield mayoral hopeful told The Suburban that she was an accountant who has worked independently from home for several years.
We called Labene again this week, after several readers told the newspaper that they had contacted the professional body that regulates accountants in the province, the Ordre des comptables professionnels agréés du Québec, who had no record of a person of that name having been a member.
“I don’t pay any more,” explained Labene. “Any association here in Quebec, if you don’t pay, you’re not a member any more. If people want to play games, then that’s their problem. As for me, I’m working for Beaconsfielders.”
“I have worked for myself for many years,” she said. “I purchased Marian Hall. I did a lot of other stuff.”
“If they want to vote for a real estate agent to sell their town, then let them sell their town,” she continued, alluding obliquely to opponent Rhonda Massad, who owns a manufacturing business together with her husband.
Massad has repeatedly reminded citizens that she is not a real estate agent, save for a six-month stint that ended in April, when she revived a real estate license that had been dormant for 15 years to help her father, after a large volume of West Islanders put their homes up for sale last fall.
“If they love their city enough, then let’s focus on the real issue,” Labene insisted. “The real issue here in Beaconsfield is that for eight years we’ve been forgotten. We deserve better. Let’s work together to make our city the wonderful city that we love.”
“I want to make my city more responsive to the needs of residents,” she said. “They have a lot of trouble with city staff, and no one wants to listen. If they want something and they don’t have it, they will tell them ‘If you don’t like the city, move somewhere else.’ This is not normal.”
“I want to support local businesses and make sure that they have the opportunity to bid on city contracts,” she concluded, “because when you see how much we contract out elsewhere every time, it’s not normal. I want the most value for our tax dollars.”
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