July 29, 2020

Quebec Superior Court Overturns Anti-Airport Decision


Constitutional Division of Jurisdiction Cited

In a decision rendered last week, a Quebec Superior Court judge overturned a lower court decision that awarded over $145,000 in damages to a group of neighbours who reckoned their properties were devalued due to the noise emanating from Guillaume Narbonne’s ultralight airfield (CCU2) in St. Cuthbert, Quebec.

eFlight readers may recall an article on this issue posted on October 18, 2018, when the judgment was made and Narbonne, a lifetime member of COPA, was ordered to pay each of the 13 plaintiffs $15,000 plus court costs.

In arriving at her decision, the Superior Court judge cited the lack of opportunity given to the attorneys general of both Quebec and Canada to participate, given the constitutional nature of the issue.

COPA played an influential role in the outcome thanks to resources in COPA’s Freedom to Fly Fund.

“This is an excellent example of how our association is working to preserve your freedom to fly,” COPA CEO Christine Gervais told eFlight. “This judgment, while in our favour, may not be final as it works its way through Quebec’s judicial system. We will continue to monitor the process and remain ready to render assistance when and where appropriate.”

Contacted by eFlight, Narbonne said, “I would like to thank in particular COPA and Bernard Gervais, as well as the aviation community for their support and, above all, the team of lawyers who did a remarkable job, namely Mtres Mathieu Quenneville, Elizabeth Cullen and Samuel Bachand.”

Photo credit: ULM Québec