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TNT Minor Hockey denied $7,500 credit by council

January 4, 2017   ·   0 Comments

By Eric Penkala
Tensions were high at a New Tecumseth Town Council meeting on Nov. 14, as council voted to reject a plea from the New Tecumseth Minor Hockey Association for a credit of $7,500.
Donna Horan, the president of TNT Minor Hockey, explained to council why she felt that her league was owed the money from the Town. She said that the league was required to pay $7,500 to the Alliston & District Chamber of Commerce for them to release a section of the New Tecumseth Recreation Centre on the weekend of April 9 and 10, 2016. The Chamber had booked the entire complex for their home show, but TNT Hockey was trying to make a bid to host the OHF Midget AA Hockey Tournament on the same weekend, and needed to have ice available if the bid was successful.
Horan indicated to council that Mayor Rick Milne had told her that the Town would reimburse the $7,500 to TNT Hockey if the bid was unsuccessful, so that the league would not lose any money over the failed bid. The money was to be reimbursed through three, $2,500 credits over a three-month period. After being informed that their bid was unsuccessful, Horan said she applied for the credits on behalf of the league, but the application was denied.
Horan said she was told that TNT Hockey would not receive the money back because Mayor Milne “did not have the authority” to agree to a deal that would have the Town repay the money to the league.
Council took issue with the fact that the agreement between TNT Hockey and the Chamber of Commerce was not in writing, with Horan admitting that the deal was done “in good faith.” Mayor Milne also said he recalled telling Horan that he would help to recoup the money for the league any way that he could, but not that the Town would directly reimburse the league.
Council voted 8-2 against giving TNT Hockey the $7,500 credit, saying the deal was between the league and the Chamber of Commerce, and the town would not be intervening.
Horan was open in sharing her displeasure with the decision.
“We’ll have to do some fundraising and collect that $7,500 elsewhere,” Horan told council after the vote. “I hope you’re very happy and proud of yourselves for what you’ve done to the children.”
Horan explained how the decision would impact the league, saying that “the kids will probably not get their goalie clinic this year or their power skating.”
Councillor Michael Beattie, who, along with Mayor Milne, was one of the two council members who voted in Horan’s favour, expressed his disappointment in the developments.
“Playoff hockey requires playoff hockey ice,” Beattie told council. “So I hope that down the road … this mistake never happens again.”

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