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the Council of State sum Bagnes …

The Bagnes illegal construction case is to be resolved by the end of the year. The canton sends an ultimatum: “If the municipality does not manage to respect the fixed requirements, the Council of State will launch a procedure tending to replace the municipal authorities.” Bagnes must complete the analysis of the 1,265 construction files for which the permits were issued between April 2, 2012 and April 27, 2016, the date of a first summons from the Council of State. The latter demanded that the commune restore a situation in conformity with the law, following the demonstration by an expert report of the extent of this affair.

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Service of structures under supervision?

The canton recognizes that the practice of calculating the land use index on the basis of a municipal regulation contrary to cantonal law has ceased. The expert he has appointed, Jean-Luc Baechler, comes to the same conclusion. In his report, the latter also recommended to the canton to fix this ultimatum and to put the municipality under control if it was not respected.

It would not be a question of managing the whole of the commune, but only the field of constructions.

Jacques Melly, Councillor of state

According to the State Councilor Jacques Melly, president of the interdepartmental working group which deals with this file, there is no question of putting the commune under supervision: “It would not be a question of managing the whole of the commune, but only the field of constructions. This work could be done by an outside agent or by government employees. If necessary, arrangements will be made in due course. ”

Risky for the municipality

The fact remains that such a situation would be a failure and a humiliation for the current administration, which would have consequences for the next one which will take office at the end of the deadline, in January. It will also be the executive of a new municipality born from the merger with Vollèges. An embarrassing legacy.

We are not immune to the unexpected, but if not, we are sure to come to the end.

Eloi Rossier, president of Bagnes

Municipal Councilor of Entremont Otherwise, Antoine Cretton is in charge of this dicastery. He does not appreciate the tone of this summons: “The canton transforms an obligation of means into an obligation of result.” So far, the Council of State has demanded only a clear method to resolve this complex matter, without setting a deadline. For the municipality, this paradigm shift is risky. It would be enough, for example, for the epidemic to hit the service hard or for its counsel, who knows the files, to be sick for the deadline to be difficult to meet.

President not worried

But the president of Bagnes, he is not worried about this deadline that the municipality had set for itself. “We have considerably increased the resources available, by hiring additional staff,” explains Eloi Rossier. He specifies that out of the 1,265 files to be analyzed, 800 are lawful, 73 affect minor cases, around a hundred are beyond municipal jurisdiction. “There are therefore around 200 files remaining, corresponding to 140 constructions, which require a more detailed legal examination, already widely under way. We are not immune to the unexpected, but if not, we are sure to come to the end. ”

This point of view is also shared by the Council of State. “The summons corresponds to reality. The working group has made its analysis and I am hopeful that the municipality will keep to the deadline, unless new elements appear, “explains Jacques Melly.

An announcement effect?

Given the optimism of the two parties vis-à-vis this ultimatum, Entremont General Councilor Pierre Troillet believes that this summons is an announcement: “The canton has shown moderate curiosity for four years. It’s great that he starts to work and remembers his role in overseeing the communes. ”

The State Councilor contests this vision. “With this decision, the Council of State shows that it is not compromising and gives clear instructions. This summons could not have happened sooner. Commissioning is a serious decision that comes after a whole series of decisions and requirements, in application of the legal framework in force, “explains Jacques Melly.

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