CN claims legal right to remove rails in Pontiac region
Residents of Pontiac County blocked the tracks to prevent CN Rail from removing the railway, but after a meeting with regional officials, CN still asserts that it will, and is legally entitled to, remove the rails anyway.
After Tuesday's rail blockade CN agreed to meet with MRC Pontiac. However, after meeting for over 90 minutes, CN maintains that it is allowed to remove the rails despite the interim control bylaw forbidding that.
John Brayley of CN said the work was stopped yesterday to guarantee the protesters' safety. Furthermore he confirmed that according to the legal opinion he obtained, CN is within its rights to dismantle the railway and that they aren't obligated to speak with the authorities who put the legislation in place.
The issue has been handed over to MRC Pontiac legal counsel. Meanwhile, Michael McCrank, MRC Pontiac warden, sent an official request to Quebec Premier, Pauline Marois, requesting government involvement in this issue because of the economic impact the railway removal will have.
Christina van Starkenburg is a Daily Observer multimedia journalist