Kurt Houlden, from Parks and Rec.  sent this in his Sept. 12th reply.  But there are no financial figures here.

DSCN4605———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Gerda Peachey <gerdapeachey@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, Sep 6, 2018 at 5:07 PM
Subject: Fwd: Request for records
To: info@oipc.bc.ca, Henry Braun <hbraun@abbotsford.ca>, Bill Flitton <BFlitton@abbotsford.ca>, Tammy Ketola <tketola@abbotsford.ca>, lbarkman <Lbarkman@abbotsford.ca>, pross <Pross@abbotsford.ca>, “Dave Loewen (Councillor)” <dfloewen@abbotsford.ca>, mgill <Mgill@abbotsford.ca>, Sandy Blue <sblue@abbotsford.ca>, Kelly Chahal <kchahal@abbotsford.ca>, Brenda Falk <bfalk@abbotsford.ca>, Ross Siemens <rsiemens@abbotsford.ca>

Hello Mr. McEvoy:

According to the City of Abbotsford officials, I need to turn to you for assistance in getting information about a deal between us and a new basketball team that will play out of our Sports and Entertainment Centre, now renamed ‘Abbotsford Centre’.
As you can see in the communication below, our City feels no need to release the details of whatever arrangement has been made between Abbotsford and the Fraser Valley Bandits.
Rather than reword the issue, I’m sending you my communication with City Hall and with Councillor Dave Loewen.
I believe my local government is evading, obscuring and obstructing the public from knowing exactly what they are paying for in this ‘partnership’ (as Mayor Braun has put it).  And I believe our local government is lying when they make it seem like nothing has been signed and that the paying public may not see or know where tax dollars are being spent.
I ask you to please intervene, and direct Abbotsford Council to see to it that there is transparency and therefore the possibility of there being any accountability in the affair of Abbotsford and the Bandits.
Council played the same head games with the paying public during the disastrous ‘Abbotsford Heat’ hockey years, trying to use Global Spectrum as a buffer so the public could not see what a bad deal we’d been dealt by our leaders.
Keeping the taxpayers away from huge financial deals like these paves the way for gross mismanagement of city coffers, and if information can be withheld who would know if or when insiders misappropriated public money?
Better for all of us to not have our City engage in opaque deals.
Thank you,
Gerda Peachey,  Abbotsford.

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Gerda Peachey <gerdapeachey@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, Aug 30, 2018 at 5:36 AM
Subject: Fwd: Request for records
To: Tammy Ketola <tketola@abbotsford.ca>, Nancy Friesen <NFriesen@abbotsford.ca>, Henry Braun <hbraun@abbotsford.ca>

Tammy, thank you for the effort you put into my request, and the blame for this response cannot be laid at your feet.

will need to write to the Information and Privacy Commissioner because it is impossible to believe this reply:  “I am unable to provide you with records responsive to your request as a signed contract/agreement between the City of Abbotsford and the Fraser Valley Bandits does not exist.”

No aspersions on you at all, but this simply cannot be true.  And if it is true, there is something terribly wrong at City Hall.

The AESC, renamed the ‘Abbotsford Centre’, has been a disaster from it’s inception and remains a financial albatross to the taxpayers in this city.  Council signed badly thought out contracts with the ‘Abbotsford Heat’, and then had to pay them to hit the road permanently.

A big fuss was made at the July/18 announcement of this newest attempt to make the centre viable, (see below).

It’s simply inconceivable that Mayor and Council have made no agreement/contract,……..or any other understanding,….. by any other name.

Does the City want us to believe that this team is being given free use of the building that still drains millions out of city coffers?

What sort of arrangements are there for unlocking the doors, security guards, parking attendants,  insurance in the event players or attendees are hurt on site?   And nothing on paper about some exchange of money?  No rental conditions?   What if fans damage the building?  It’s just free?

No signed anything?

I don’t believe this, but if it is true then nothing was learned from the previous users of the Abbotsford sports centre.  Then this deal looks even worse.

On 107.1 Country, Mayor Braun calls this a “partnership” with a “league playing out of this arena”.  He goes on to say, “Tax-payers are not contributing anything to this, in case anybody’s wondering.”

Clearly, that is false.

Taxpayers are on the hook for the debt incurred to build, and maintain this centre.  We pay over a million a year in interest on that debt and still pay out to Global Spectrum, in the U.S (or whatever their name might now be).  So how does it make sense to give the arena over to this basketball team for ten games, and possible practice sessions, yet claim there is no agreement, and no monetary reimbursement for the use of this very costly public facility.

Will send this on to the Commissioner and some media, in hopes that Abbotsford’s taxpayers be provided with sensible answers to sensible questions.

Gerda Peachey

See:  The Bandits arrive in the Fraser Valley

BEN LYPKA – THE ABBOTSFORD NEWS – JULY 16, 2018

Say hello to the Bandits.

Contract does not exist

Dave F. Loewen (Councillor)

Aug 30 (8 days ago)

Reply
to me

It’s true – there is no agreement between the City and the Bandits BB because they are renting the facility just like any other entertainment act that comes to town. They have rented the facility for 12 games (I believe) in their first season. So the agreement would be between Abbotsford Centre and the Bandits.

Dave

Sent from my iPad