Ten-mile lodge forced to close

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They say tourism will be a big factor in Pontiacs future. The only economic increase is another civil servant job that will eventually cost us tax payers more money; they have hired someone to help in marketing.

They say tourism will be a big factor in Pontiacs future. The only economic increase is another civil servant job that will eventually cost us tax payers more money; they have hired someone to help in marketing.
 This winter, the committee decided to close down the Dumoine River access road via 10-mile Lake. They did this by keeping it a secondary road and refusing to do      maintenance on it. Meanwhile they have prioritized Chemin Charette and Manitou Road. What’s the difference? These roads have no small businesses on them.
Ten-mile road provides access to three small Pontiac based business. And every Pontiac operator that provides transportation for tourists uses it like Esprit, Black River Expeditions, Ron Henry’s Guiding and more. The local Penguin snowmobile club uses 10-mile Road. They don’t use Chemin Charette; no one does other then a few ZEC people.
Chemin Charette links two ZECS. So why is it prioritized? Easy. The board is made up of three people who represent the ZECS, and two civil servants, none of them pay taxes in the TNO.
There are no TNO residents or taxpayers on the committee, so we have no say in how our tax dollars are spent. Is this proper political ethics? Who decides who is on the committee? What are the factors that   determine roads’ priority. Why is Pontiac small business not prioritized? Why are they pleasing the ZECS who pay no taxes?
Since 1998, only 10-mile lodge has spent money and labour on this section of road. A few years ago our municipal taxes increase by 250% and we were charged a road tax.    I pay $770 yearly just for road tax.
Another great decision made by our administration is to inspect all outfitters every year for safety standards. They came last October and said they would be       sending two inspectors every year. We are already inspected by the provincial           government.
It’s amazing how they find money to   create administrative jobs but have none to spend on infrastructure. This is an attitude that will further damage the Pontiac’s development.
For me, there is no future here in Pontiac with this attitude. Under these circumstances, 10-mile Lodge is being forced to remove itself from the picture by removing all infrastructure we can while we still have a bush road. I have already sold my auberge. The man who does the provincial inspections said I had the most beautiful auberge he has ever seen and the             cameramen from Outdoor Passion told me it’s the most beautiful auberge they have ever filmed.
When I pull out, there will be a huge    sector for Pontiac tourists lost. There are a few thousand people who use the 10-mile Road every year.
Richard Lauzon
TNO