The building, which includes an ice rink and a community hall, has been closed for more than a year, as the city council believes the municipality can no longer operate it.
The small municipality east of Hearst suffered a loss in property tax revenue of approximately $500,000. This is due to TC Énergie demolishing some buildings at the Natural Gas Pipeline Compressor Plant.
This amount represents about 20% of the municipality’s budget.
Even after cutting municipal spending, last April the city council approved a 10% increase in property tax for the residential sector.
At the same time, the city council announced that the ownership of the sports complex is surplus in anticipation of a possible sale.
Matisse Val Côte Mayor Marc Dupuis said the city council had held discussions with junior hockey officials in Matisse, without being able to find a way to reduce the operational deficit at the arena.
« We decided to look at the selling side. If we can’t, we have to look at other projects as well, but we can’t keep him there like a white elephant that would cost us an annual sum. »
The municipality still has to pay for heating and electricity for the building, as well as insurance.
The mayor thinks it’s possible companies will take care of the building for some use.
Prior to initiating the sale, the municipality issued a public notice requesting public comment, as required by its bylaws regarding the disposition of a property.
These comments must be submitted no later than Tuesday, December 7, the date of the next meeting of the Municipal Council.
During this meeting, the Board will decide when to publish the presentation of proposals. This will indicate in particular how much the property is being valued at.
Businessman, Gaetan Garneau, believes that the municipality does not have many options.
« Of course, it would be fun for our guys to have that, but we don’t have the means to keep it (the arena). This is what they tell us. »
Gaëtan Garneau says residents are aware that someone is interested in the building for commercial purposes.
Lionel Grenier, another resident of Matisse-Val-Côté points out that there are fewer young people in the community.
It was hard to have small teams, He said. Expresses sadness about the situation.
Everything will be closed: the carnival, there is no place in it. No more hockey teams, so it’s tough.
Another citizen, Silvio Jocelyn, also agreed to the sale.
They can sell it. Our municipal taxes will be reduced, do you think.
Some citizens did not want to speak into the microphone, but believed that the municipality should keep the building for further use.
This way, the arena can be used again in the future if conditions are more favorable.
“Alcohol scholar. Twitter lover. Zombieaholic. Hipster-friendly coffee fanatic.”