On October 16, Quebec’s chief electoral officer launched an investigation into reports that the owner of a construction firm in the suburban municipality of Boisbriand attempted to bribe two mayoral candidates into dropping out of the upcoming election.
Local construction magnate Lino Zambito discouraged Patrick Thiffault and Marlene Cordato, both municipal councillors, from running for mayor in a meeting with Zambito and Boisbriand mayor Sylvie Saint-Jean last spring. Thiffault and Cordato surreptitiously recorded the meeting, and recently turned a copy of the recording over to Radio-Canada.
CBC reports that Zambito’s Infrabec has won over half the municipal contracts awarded under Saint-Jean’s administration – cumulatively valued at about $50 million.
Saint-Jean claims that the purpose of the meeting was simply to try to curb the campaign costs of the upcoming election. “I thought it would be interesting to avoid an election that would cost $300,000 and work together,” Saint-Jean told the Montreal Gazette.