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October 2008

September 2008

Côte Saint-Luc Senior Social Club


I was delighted, in my capacity as acting mayor, to preside over the installation luncheon of the Côte Saint-Luc Senior Social Club recently at the Monkland Grill Restaurant. Open to residents 55 years and over, the Côte Saint-Luc Senior Social Club meets every Wednesday afternoon for stimulating and informative programs. Interesting and relaxing day trips are planned. Activities include guest speakers, fitness and bridge, beginner bridge, Mah Jong and line dancing instructions. Bridge is played every Tuesday and Thursday afternoon and is open to all members. I had the honour of swearing in the new president, Barbara Akerman, who takes over from the wonderful Eva Silverman. Barbara is the mother-in-law of N.D.G. Liberal MNA Russell Copeman, who was on hand for the luncheon. Pictured here are Barbara Akerman and Eva Silverman up front. In the back, left to right, are: Loretta Anisef of Parks and Recreation, Councillor Glenn J. Nashen, City Manager Ken Lerner, Russell Copeman, myself, Councillor Mitchell Brownstein and Councillor Dida Berku.

Mayor For a Day Contest Winners


Ileana Solivo and Lennyx Craig of Merton School and Jeremy Elbaz of École Maimonide were selected as the 2008 Mayor for a Day winners in Côte Saint-Luc, following an essay-writing contest.

Lennyx discussed pollution problems, Ileana wrote about issues regarding snow removal and road work, and Jeremy touched on library renovations and traffic congestion. Côte Saint-Luc residents or students attending a school in Côte Saint-Luc in grade five, six, 10 and 11 were asked to submit an essay explaining what they would do if they were the mayor of Côte Saint-Luc for a day.

The three winners visited city hall and toured the city  last June. They read their winning essays in front of the mayor and council during a council meeting at city hall on September 8 (pictured here).

Charity Hockey in CSL

The fourth annual Lila Sigal Marathon Hockey Tournament in support of the McGill Cancer Nutrition – Rehabilitation Program (CNRP) at the Sir Mortimer B. Davis – Jewish General Hospital moved to Côte Saint-Luc this year and our very own Samuel Moskovitch Arena on Saturday, September 13, 2008. Forty-four players participated in this non-stop tournament, with each player raising a minimum of $1,000. More than $60,000 in total was raised.

This year’s tournament consisted of four teams of 12 players, with each team playing either four or five games during the day – a real marathon as all players were on the ice for over half the day.


All teams played one game against each of the other teams, with semi-final playoff games based on round robin seedings. A major highlight this year was the presence of the Montreal Juniors of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. They held a public practice at the arena, followed by a father/child skate with the players. Farrel Miller, who co-chairs the tournament with David Sigal, owns the Juniors. The duo  pictured here (David on the left and Farrel on the right)  came up with the idea for the event to honour the memory of David’s mother, the late Lila Sigal, who passed away from pancreatic cancer in 2004. What better way to celebrate her legacy than by raising funds and awareness for the McGill Cancer Nutrition – Rehabilitation Program, located at the Jewish General Hospital!

The McGill Cancer Nutrition – Rehabilitation Program (CNRP) is a key component of the JGH’s Segal Cancer Centre program. The CNRP provides patients experiencing cancer related nutrition problems with a coordinated approach that combines nutritional assessment, counselling, and exercise programs with therapies that directly attack the tumour and provide pain and symptom management. If left untreated, nutritional problems associated with cancer can lead to progressive wasting, weakness, debilitation, compromised immune function, potential therapy intolerance, and even death. Certain forms of cancer common to Quebec, most notably advanced lung and gastrointestinal cancer, are associated with weight loss that usually begins at the onset of disease and progresses throughout the course of illness, making this centre all the more important to Quebecers.

Since 1934, the Sir Mortimer B. Davis - Jewish General Hospital, a 637-bed McGill University teaching hospital, has provided "Care for All," serving patients of diverse religious, linguistic and cultural backgrounds from Montreal, throughout Quebec and beyond. As one of the province’s leading acute-care hospitals, the JGH has earned a reputation for excellence, continually expanding and upgrading its treatment and teaching programs as well as leading research programs underway at the hospital’s Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research, Quebec’s second largest biomedical research centre. For more, please visit


Hyman Fishman's Touching Bench Restoration


Hyman Fishman is a remarkable man. In his mid 90s, he lives alone on in an apartment on Sir Walter Scott Avenue. Hyman is in good physical condition and sharp as a whistle. For the past many years, from spring to fall, Hyman has spent a lot of time relaxing on a bench on Kildare Road near his apartment. This is where he and his late wife Faye Cooperman Fishman had many restful moments. Fay passed away in 2000. When Hyman heard about our bench dedication/restoration program he decided to honour his late wife by having a plaque affixed with her name on it.  The bench was also completely refurbished. There is another bench right next to it and Hyman says he will restore that one as well. Residents are encouraged to follow Hyman's lead and either restore an existing bench or help us order a new one. Please call Regine at 514-485-6800 for more information.

The Snow Dump is Clear

Yes, I know it is the beginning of September. However, I am pleased to report that the dirty muddy hill at the  Snow Dump on Marc Chagall Avenue has finally disappeared. Due to the extraordinary amount of snow we received last winter, the hill stayed with us - albeit shrinking in size- for much of the summer. Mayor Anthony Housefather and I did find ways for Public Works to bring in equipment to break down the hill and open up more drainage. And it worked! There were some who feared back in June that the hill would have remained intact for the next snowfall in December. That concern can now be let go.

A sad farewell to Jim Butler

The City of Côte Saint-Luc is in mourning following the passing September 8 of our former long-time city manager James G. Butler. He was 74 years old. As Mayor Anthony Housefather stated: "Jim was involved in the development of Côte Saint-Luc for more than 30 years and he worked closely with former Mayor Bernard Lang and the city council on many major projects that transformed Côte Saint-Luc from a small town into the municipality we know today. He left his mark on Côte Saint-Luc." Jim joined Côte Saint-Luc in 1965 as city treasurer. He became the city manager in 1969 and served for 32 years. He retired in 2001 at the time of the forced municipal mergers. Following his retirement, the city's Parks and Recreation Department offices were named for afer him. During his time as city manager, Butler helped oversee the building of the municipal garage, the Samuel Moskovitch Arena and the city hall/library complex. He was particularly proud of having helped create the city’s public library with former Mayor Lang and librarian Eleanor London. The library is widely-considered the best on the island of Montreal. When our city demerged from Montreal, Jim wanted to get involved as a volunteer. He sat on our all-important Planning Advisory Committee (PAC) for two years. When his term was up I was happy to add him to my Toponmy and Sponsorship Committee. I had the good fortune of working with Jim for many years, particularly during my time as a municipal reporter for The Suburban, The Monitor and The Weekly Herald. He and former Mayor Bernard Lang had an extremely close relationship. Jim ran the city like a business. He knew absolutely everything that was going on. Jim was born in the Saguenay region of Quebec. He graduated from St. Francis Xavier University. At age 25, he moved to Montreal and worked at the accounting firm of Clarkson Gorden (now Ernst and Young). He took night classes and earned his Chartered Accountancy designation. Before joining the City of Côte Saint-Luc, Butler was the city treasurer for the City of Dollard des Ormeaux. I extend my deepest sympathies to his family.