Gaëtan Primeau

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Gaëtan Primeau
Montreal City Councillor for Tétreaultville
Assumed office
Preceded by Ivon Le Duc
Opposition Leader on Montreal City Council
In office
October 2009 – November 2009
Preceded by Benoît Labonté
Succeeded by Louise Harel
Chair of the Vision Montreal caucus
In office
Preceded by Claire St-Arnaud
Succeeded by Benoit Dorais
Personal details
Born (1941-04-16) April 16, 1941 (age 76)
Political party Vision Montréal
Residence Montreal, Quebec

Gaëtan Primeau (born April 16, 1941) is a politician in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. He has served on the Montreal city council since 2005, representing the east-end ward of Tétreaultville as a member of Vision Montreal.

Early life and career[edit]

Primeau was born in Montreal. He has a certificate in surveying from Collège Ahuntsic and a certificate in civil engineering from the École Polytechnique de Montréal. Before entering political life, he worked for thirty years as an employee of the City of Montreal, including a term in the office of the chair of the Montreal executive committee (i.e., the municipal cabinet).[1]

City councillor[edit]

First term

Primeau was first elected to council in the 2005 municipal election. Mayor Gérald Tremblay's Montreal Island Citizens Union (MICU) won a majority government in this election, and Primeau served as a member of the official opposition. In late 2006, he spoke against a proposal to rename Montreal's Parc Avenue after former Quebec premier Robert Bourassa.[2] In the same period, he joined with fellow councillor Laurent Blanchard in a "bathrobe protest," showing up to a 6 am budget meeting dressed in his bathrobe and arguing that the meeting had been scheduled too early for public participation.[3] In 2008, he was appointed to the municipal committee on transportation, infrastructure management, and the environment.[4]

Primeau was chosen as Vision Montreal's caucus leader in December 2008.[5] Two months later, he publicly defended party leader Benoît Labonté against criticisms from former executive director Robert Laramée, who had called on Labonté to resign or be ousted in the face of weak polling numbers.[6] Labonté ultimately resigned as Vision Montreal leader in June 2009 and was replaced by Louise Harel.

After resigning as party leader, Labonté initially continued to serve as leader of the opposition on council. He stood down from the latter position in October 2009, following rumours (which he strenuously denied) of involvement in a municipal corruption scandal. According to a report in the Montreal Gazette, Primeau succeeded to the position of opposition leader and served for a brief term in late 2009 before resigning in favour of Louise Harel.[7]

Second term

Primeau was re-elected to a second council term in the 2009 municipal election. Tremblay's party, now renamed as Union Montreal, was re-elected with another majority, and Primeau continued to serve in opposition. He was appointed to the city's finance committee in December 2009 and has also served as his party's sports and recreation critic.[8] He stood down as caucus chair in 2012.

Tremblay resigned as mayor against the backup of a serious corruption scandal in late 2012 and was replaced by Michael Applebaum. In early 2013, Primeau was appointed to a committee empowered to examine municipal contracts.[9]

By virtue of holding his seat on city council, Primeau is also a member of the Mercier–Hochelaga-Maisonneuve borough council.

Electoral record[edit]

2009 Montreal municipal election results: Councillor, Tétreaultville
2005 Montreal municipal election results: Councillor, Tétreaultville


  1. ^ Gaëtan Primeau - Conseiller de Ville du district de Tetreaultville, Vision Montreal, accessed 16 August 2013.
  2. ^ "Yea or nay? Councillors duck question," Montreal Gazette, 20 November 2006, A4.
  3. ^ Windsor Star, 19 December 2006, C1.
  4. ^ "Propositions de nomimations à diverses instances," Canada Newswire, 28 January 2008, 19:18.
  5. ^ "Nouvelles nominations au sein des élus de l'Opposition officielle à la Ville de Montréal," Canada Newswire, 6 December 2008, 13:58.
  6. ^ "Vision Montreal official defends party leader," Montreal Gazette, 18 February 2009, A8.
  7. ^ Catherine Solyom, "Where's the proof? Harel demands; Payoff rumours. She points to mayor as source of reports," Montreal Gazette, 18 October 2009, A1. Primeau appears to have held this position on a nominal basis only; his online biography, as provided by Vision Montreal on 23 August 2013, does not include any reference to it.
  8. ^ "Nominations aux commissions du conseil de ville et du conseil d'agglomération," Canada Newswire, 1 December 2009, 16:57; James Mennie, "'We've learned a lot from the past'; Despite financial hangover from 2005 FINA meet, city dives in as host of 2014 masters championships," Montreal Gazette, 15 July 2011, A3.
  9. ^ "Création de l'EPIM - « Vision Montréal obtient gain de cause » - Gaétan Primeau," Canada Newswire, 11 January 2013, 13:03.