Canadian E-Fest ticket holders will wait longer for refunds

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One Stop Strategy Group, the promoter of the canceled electric car race around East False Creek, rejected Vancouver City Council’s proposal to return the $500,000 deposit.

The Montreal promoter of the canceled electric car race around East False Creek has rejected Vancouver City Council’s proposal to return the $500,000 deposit.

In a closed meeting last month, the city council agreed to hand over the sum to One Stop Strategy Group (OSS) on the condition that it reimburse ticket holders, sponsors and suppliers who did not been paid. The proposal was announced by City Hall on July 29 – the Friday of the British Columbia Day long weekend and a day after the city council elected in 2018 held its last scheduled meeting before the municipal elections on July 15. october.

Talks broke down between the town hall and the OSS last week because the OSS wants to receive the money with no strings attached, rather than a mutually agreed lawyer overseeing the disbursement.

“It’s impossible for us to accept it, and they knew it,” Carter said in a brief August 22 phone interview. “I will give you an update when I am cleared. All I can confirm is that we have not received any of the funds.

City Hall spokesperson Kai-lani Rutland said: “Reimbursement discussions have now stalled, which we are disappointed with, but the City remains eager to move forward if the OSS reconsider its position.”

Officially known as Canadian E-Fest, the event was scheduled for June 30 to July 2 and was to include a Nickelback concert, an environmental talk and the ABB Formula E World Championship race.

The OSS did not obtain all necessary permits to use the private and public lands around the street racetrack, so the event was canceled in late April. OSS lost its contract in June with UK-based Formula E, which did not include Vancouver in the 2023 racing schedule.

Green Party Con. Mike Wiebe and ABC Vancouver County. Sarah Kirby-Yung co-sponsored the April 2021 City Council motion to bring Formula E to Vancouver.

The contract of January 26 between the town hall and the OSS, obtained under freedom of information, allowed the town hall to keep the entire sum.

The OSS was responsible for all event production costs, including city engineering and policing. He also agreed to pay overtime costs due to having an event downtown on Canada Day weekend – a date usually blocked for major new events.

The agreement stated that the city had the right to draw on the deposit “at any time and from time to time” to reimburse ratepayers for any costs under the agreement. In the event of termination of the agreement due to default by the developer, the portion of the deposit intended to subsidize local musicians and up to 20 community center car charging stations was non-refundable.

If the event had occurred, the city would have been obligated to repay any remaining balance within 180 days of the event. The parties also agreed to “maintain an open book policy with each other” and to give each other full inspection rights over all records relating to the event.

The contract also required the OSS to create a community benefits agreement, including hiring and affirmative action contracting, and to hire consultants to monitor the agreement and analyze the results. In return, City Hall was to receive space for a 20-by-20-foot booth in a space comparable to that of the event sponsors.

Carter said 33,000 tickets were sold for the event, but did not say how many were full price for the public compared to free tickets for sponsors.

One of the ticket buyers was Spencer Thompson from Vancouver, who shelled out $260 for a day of racing and the Nickelback concert.

“There was no information about ticket refunds, then I tried calling them, tweeting them, emailing them,” Thompson said.

He found someone on LinkedIn from the OSS who referred him to Carter. But Carter hasn’t responded to five emails, so Thompson has since filed a fraud report with her credit card provider and is awaiting a refund that way.

Thompson said that by buying the tickets in March, he had taken a chance on a promising new event, which seemed credible and had the support of the City of Vancouver at the time.

“Someone should be held accountable, and if they don’t have the money, then at least hand it over,” Thompson said. “It was ridiculous that they weren’t.”

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