By Craig Westcott | Vol. 31 No. 49 (February 20 2019)
CBS council approved a sharing Tuesday night of the 50/50 monies taken in during the Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling tournament, but not everyone in the chamber was happy with the way the funds were divvied up.
Council voted to split nearly $17,000 among seven groups, including CBR Minor Hockey, the CBS Skating club and the local food bank, but councillor-at-large Rex Hillier argued the money could have gone farther.
The motion to allocate the lottery proceeds was made by councillor-at-large Cheryl Davis, who chairs the recreation and leisure services committee.
Davis explained a major factor in deciding who would get the monies was the impact that tying up the CBS Arena for two weeks had on its regular users. “Some – CBR Minor (Hockey) and the CBS Skating Club – were affected more than the junior and senior hockey teams,” said Davis. “However, monies for them will assist in their operations.”
All four groups – CBR Minor Hockey, the Skating Club, the Assante Junior Renegades and the CB Senior Blues are each getting $2,000 from the 50/50 proceeds.
Davis said the two local high school hockey teams, the Holy Spirit Falcons and Queen Elizabeth Pioneers, were also affected, but will soon receive money raised from the Winterfest in CBS’ shield games.
The CBS Public Library and St. John Ambulance are also getting funds from the curling draws, $3,000 in the case of the library, some $2,892 for St. John Ambulance. The CBS – Paradise Food Bank is also getting $2,892.
“St. John Ambulance were front and centre at the Grand Slam of Curling event and volunteered their services for countless hours over the duration of the event,” Davis said.
Deputy Mayor Richard Murphy seconded Davis’ motion.
Councillor Kirk Youden said sharing the funds this way is an “awesome move.”
“I contributed significantly in the purchase of 50/50 tickets,” he joked. “I didn’t win, but certainly these groups had volunteers who helped out… To see the 50/50 proceeds go back to some of our community groups is certainly awesome.”
Hillier said he agreed with Youden that giving such funds to community groups is a good idea.
“These were recommendations that came out of the (curling event’s) organizing committee and went through a committee of council,” Hillier noted. “We’ve got seven groups here. I feel that with $17,000 we could have spread the money around a little bit (more). These are all commendable groups. I’m sure none of them will have any trouble spending the money, but I think with $17,000 we could have touched a few more groups within the town, so I won’t be supporting this motion.”
Mayor Terry French said the donations are a great outcome of the tournament. “And all of this money was raised by volunteers, people who took the time to go up and hustle all of us to buy tickets for worthy causes,” he noted. “All seven are great organizations and do yeoman service for the town… and certainly all the groups are deserving.”
But French said he recognized Hillier’s point and hoped that such proceeds from any future events, including possibly a return engagement for the Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling, will be shared among a broader list of recipients.
“For now, I think this is a great thing,” French said, adding Sportsnet deserves as much credit for the donations being possible as the Town does itself.
Put to a vote, the motion passed with all but Hillier voting yea. Councillors Gerard Tilley and Junior Eason were absent from the meeting. Ward 1 councillor Darrin Bent cited a conflict of interest and left the chamber prior to the discussion and vote.