26.02.2016

It’s time for the tantrums to stop

Orient Bay Kiosk : Guillaume Arnell wishes to make something very clear.

 

False statements continue to spread and embarrass the Collectivité with the support of the population, even though this latter does not have all the elements to assess the situation," said the Senior Vice President, Guillaume Arnell, in his introduction to a press conference held Friday morning on this subject.

Of the eight operators selected by the COM as part of the AOT (autorisation d'occupation temporaire) allocation for restaurants, only three parties have yet to sign the agreement. They argue the rent is too high. The revised rent is now € 2,200 a month.

Beyond economic considerations, this debate has become a political issue, as had the Plan Local d’Urbanisme once. But today Guillaume Arnell takes a strong stand, saying aloud what many are thinking since the beginning of this case, namely that the previous AOT were subleased at an excessive price. In complete impunity.

"In the 1980’s, Albert Fleming built constructions on the beach granting their management to St. Martin people," begins to tell Guillaume Arnell. The AOT was around € 400 to € 500 per month. "Then the St. Martin people became victims of greed and subleased their restaurant for huge sums," he continues. Up to $4,000 per month. These people did not pay the rent back to the town (and later to the Collectivité) on a regular basis, arguing that the AOT had expired.

Today they are caught in their own trap. The Collectivité has drafted new contracts, awarded new AOT with agreements clearly stipulating that - under French law - subleasing is prohibited. In other words, they must operate themselves the business and directly draw their income from this activity. They must also pay a monthly rent and account for the TGCA ... The conditions for business have changed.

"We were told that rents are too high... I am willing to analyze the situation but nobody is able to give us an assessment to estimate their profit shares!" reports the elected official, who no longer accepts criticism on the architecture of the kiosk. "You should know that we cannot build a permanent structure on the beach as part of an AOT; that is why we chose to build them using wood. Moreover, we are told that it is impossible to open a bar inside... This is untrue, some have done that," he says while asking the Director of Planning Services to show a video proving his point.

“It’s time for the tantrums to stop", firmly states Guillaume Arnell, according to whom the three disgruntled restaurateurs have only one ambition - "undermining the Collectivité".

Estelle Gasnet
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