Mayor of small town north of Montreal latest Quebec mayor to resign post

The Canadian Press

MASCOUCHE, Que. - Quebec's corruption scandal has forced yet another mayor out of office.

Richard Marcotte announced today he is stepping down as mayor of Mascouche, about 40 kilometres north of Montreal.

Marcotte has been under intense pressure to resign, particularly since his arrest last spring on charges of corruption and fraud involving public contracts in Mascouche.

He has rarely been seen at city council in recent months as residents have come out in large numbers to call for his removal.

Marcotte tells a local newspaper in an exclusive interview that he's quitting for family reasons — the son of his wife is said to be gravely ill.

The mayor's corruption-related resignation follows those of Montreal's Gerald Tremblay and Laval's Gilles Vaillancourt at the beginning of November.

A spokeswoman for the town of Mascouche said there would be no immediate comment.

Marcotte's term was to run out in November 2013, when provincewide municipal elections are held.

He says he waited so long to resign to avoid trigger a premature election that would cost the municipality $200,000.