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President of Montreal's public consultation office fired after City Hall vote

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The head of Montreal's public consultation office has been fired following a vote at City Hall on Tuesday.

Councillors voted to remove Isabelle Beaulieu in light of a spending scandal at the Office de consultation publique de Montréal (OCPM). Councillors also voted Tuesday to place the OCPM under trusteeship.

An investigation by the Journal de Montreal newspaper revealed that there was extravagant spending on the taxpayer's dime at the office under the helm of Dominique Ollivier, when she was president. She stepped down as executive committee president following the newspaper report.

It was later revealed that when Beaulieu took over from Ollivier, in February 2022, the questionable spending habits continued.

Beaulieu will not be entitled to severance, which was equivalent to a year's salary.

Coun. Robert Beaudry, a member of Mayor Valérie Plante's executive committee, told reporters that a search for a new president will happen "as soon as possible" and that actions have already been taken to put an end to inappropriate expenses for things like travel and restaurants.

"I hope that we can take this crisis as an opportunity to go to a next level because [public] consultations are important. People [want to be] aware of what happens in their city, their borough. They want to be part of it and it's important to have those kinds or organizations who can [hear] the voice of the population," Beaudry said. 

Both Plante and the leader of the opposition at City Hall, Aref Salem, called on Beaulieu to resign last week. Plante vowed last Friday to initiate the process this week to have her removed.

This is a developing story that will be updated.

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