Richard Marcotte Richard Marcotte


1 December 2012. Richard Marcotte, for two decades the mayor of the rapidly growing Mascouche, north of Montreal, is resigning. Mr. Marcotte was one of 14 people charged in April by Quebec’s anti-corruption unit over allegations of fake invoices, kickbacks, vote buying and fraud. Hhe was charged with eight criminal counts for fraud on government, municipal corruption, conspiracy and breach of trust. He denied the charges and refused to resign. But he attended only the minimal number of council meetings required for him to keep his salary, once every three months. Mr. Marcotte announced his departure in an interview appearing today on the website of the local weekly, Le Trait d’union. Mr. Marcotte took credit for the changes during his mandates in the once-sleepy suburb. “It’s 22 years of my life I am leaving. What was Mascouche 22 years ago? I was the mastermind of the city’s development.” Construction magnates Antonio Accurso and Normand Trudel were also arrested in the same investigation, which police code-named Project Gravel. The Charbonneau inquiry into the construction industry heard testimonies that there was collusion in the way public contracts handled in Mascouche Two construction bosses, André Durocher and Lino Zambito, testified that they tried to bid for Mascouche projects but were warned by Mr. Trudel that they should desist because it was his turf. Mr. Durocher testified that his rival told him that having the lowest bid wouldn’t help because city officials would amend the tender until Mr. Trudel won the contract. “Normand Trudel and Mayor Marcotte, it’s the same people,” Mr. Durocher said in his testimony, blaming high public-works costs on the lack of competition. Earlier this fall, Montreal’s mayor, Gérald Tremblay and Laval Mayor Gilles Vaillancourt stepped down after their names were mentioned in The Charbonneau inquiry.