Musicians and music lovers opposing new federal regulation

Musicians are petitioning against a new federal regulation that adds charges to bars and other venues that host international performers.

Local singer-songwriter Helen Austin is among musicians and music lovers decrying a new federal regulation that adds a fee to small venues that promote out-of-country performers.

Musicians and music lovers are petitioning against a new federal regulation that has bumped charges to bars and other venues that host international performers.

Venues are being charged a $275 application fee per musician along with managers, sound people and the like, plus an extra $150 work permit charge for each approved musician and crew member. Until Minister of Employment, Social Development and Multiculturalism Jason Kenney announced the new rules this summer, bars had paid $150 per band member up to $450.

The petition at change.org says the regulation “unfairly punishes international musicians and small Canadian venues. The Canadian government should be encouraging culture and the arts, not punishing those who are trying to promote it.”

By Thursday, the petition had garnered upwards of 100,000 signatures. Supporters include Comox Valley musician Helen Austin, who writes: “Smaller venues charged to feature international performers … but not the large arenas … can’t upset the big guy!”

Milo Yakibchuk plans to stop hosting international shows at the Venue Formerly Known as Joe’s Garage in Courtenay.

“I don’t need the hassle,” he said. “They just put up the costs for special-occasion permits. It’s just money, money, money.

“Sooner or later they’re going to realize that you can’t get blood from a stone. If you want to support business you have to allow business to grow. It’s not happening. At every turn there’s some regulation or some fee.

“In the old days we called them the mafia; now we call them the government,” he added.

Yakibchuk will continue promoting shows featuring East Coast musicians such as Newfoundland singer/songwriter Ron Hynes, who performs Sept. 18.

“I’m just not going to deal with anyone from outside of Canada, which is unfortunate because we had people from Australia that were coming to town,” Yakibchuk said.

Visiting bands performing several tour dates, and musicians and buskers performing in Canadian festivals are exempt from the rules, provided they don’t perform in bars and restaurants.

reporter@comoxvalleyrecord.com

 

Just Posted

Affordable rental housing complex opens in Courtenay

The Braidwood facility will house 34 people at risk of homelessness

Applications open for record bursary, scholarship funding at North Island College

Current and future North Island College students can now apply for scholarships… Continue reading

Second Stage Players present laughter and love in We Are Family

Get your tickets early to see the Evergreen Club’s Second Stage Players’… Continue reading

Open house opens access for those suffering from vision loss

Pat Chicquen understands how isolating losing vision can be, which is why… Continue reading

Valley SPCA overwhelmed with 45 cats taken from local property

Many of the cats have never been around humans, or have never been touched or handled.

VIDEO: Restaurant robots are already in Canada

Robo Sushi in Toronto has waist-high robots that guide patrons to empty seats

Comox Valley Hospice Society finds new Ocean Front home

Comox Valley Hospice Society (CVHS) recently announced plans to construct a new… Continue reading

Trucker who caused Broncos crash likely to be deported: lawyer

The Crown has asked that Sidhu serve 10 years in prison

China chemical plant blast kills 47, injures hundreds more

This is one of China’s worst industrial accidents in recent years

Montreal priest stabbed while celebrating morning mass

The incident happened Friday morning at Montreal’s St. Joseph’s Oratory

Organic Matters tea recalled across B.C. due to Salmonella

Recall for OM tea products is B.C. wide, possibly national.

Permit rejected to bring two cheetahs to B.C.

Earl Pfeifer owns two cheetahs, one of which escaped in December 2015

Real-life tsunami threat in Port Alberni prompts evacuation updates

UBC study says some people didn’t recognize the emergency signal

Care providers call for B.C. seniors’ watchdog to step down

The association also asks the province to conduct an audit and review of the mandate of her office

Most Read