June 10, 2014 6:49 pm

Off-ice battle over Telus Cup facility rental fees

Moose Jaw's Mosaic Place was the host arena for the Telus Cup from April 21-27, 2014.

Derek Putz / Global News

MOOSE JAW – Hockey Canada is ‘blacklisting’ Moose Jaw’s Mosaic Place, saying the cost to put on this spring’s Telus Cup was much higher than negotiated.

In a letter to the Mosaic Place board of directors, the organization claims it paid nearly double the expected cost to rent the facility for the national midget hockey championship.

Hockey Canada says it won’t consider Mosaic Place for future events, and won’t recommend it to other groups.

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“Under the current financial model, it would be difficult for us to back with any of our events for them to be a success in Mosaic Place,” said Jeff Beck, Hockey Canada’s manager of events and properties.

Global News hasn’t seen the letter, but Hockey Canada claims cost overruns were significant.

Mosaic Place disputes that, calling the letter ‘confusing’ and a ‘disappointment’.

“It’s definitely not true,” said Doug Campbell, Mosaic Place business development director. “We’ve got a contractual agreement that detailed all those costs in 2011.”

Campbell says the facility hasn’t had an issue hosting previous major events, such as the Canada Cup of Curling or Stars on Ice.

“If the event wasn’t as successful as maybe (Hockey Canada) had hoped, it’s certainly not the facility’s responsibility, certainly not the taxpayers’ responsibility to fund what they perceive to be their profit in the event,” Campbell said.

Telus Cup revenues are estimated to have achieved a ‘break-even’ point, according to Hockey Canada. Any extra money, Beck says, would have been re-invested in Moose Jaw.

“It’s all left behind to grow the game, to build on hockey in the community and for youth wellness,” he said.

Both sides tell Global News they would be open to working together again, but Hockey Canada says it would only bring an event back to Moose Jaw under much different contractual terms.

Mosaic Place says there are no plans to change how it does business.

Members of Moose Jaw city council and the Telus Cup host committee could not be reached for comment on Tuesday.

The Mosaic Place board of directors is expected to respond to Hockey Canada’s letter following a meeting on June 24.

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