August 29, 2016 - 1:00 PM
VERNON - The Okanagan Equestrian Society is launching a fundraising campaign to help pay for legal costs associated with an impending court case against the city.
Society president Robyn Dalziel says they are planning to sell debentures — a type of loan certificate — as a way of financing the lawsuit.
“There’s so many people asking how they can donate or how they can help, so we’ve been looking for a way that people can donate to help the society,” Dalziel says.
The legal battle began after the society was evicted from the Kin Race Track property, which it leased for the purpose of holding equestrian events, in 2010. At that time, the property was jointly owned by the city and the North Okanagan Regional District, however regional parkland restructuring has since shifted ownership entirely to the city. Local government has expressed interest in using the land for something else, however the society insists it has a legal right to keep using the facility.
Court dates have not yet been announced, however Dalziel is expecting the trial to be set for sometime in 2017.
The debentures, she says, are a way for people to invest in the future of the society, and eventually get paid back.
“As part of the lawsuit we are requesting damages and special damages. We 100 per cent think we will be successful with the lawsuit and that we will come out the other side of this with money,” Dalziel says.
The society can’t start selling the debentures until a special resolution is made by the membership. That’s on the agenda for an Oct. 1 general meeting, Dalziel says.
Only members will be able to purchase the debentures. Membership is currently $2 (although it may be raised to $5) and can be paid at the general meeting.
“Those debentures will go to financing the lawsuit as well as rebuilding the grounds,” Dalziel says, noting the grandstands burned down in 2014.
The society is also planning on holding a fall harvest dinner, dance and silent auction, tentatively set for Oct. 22. The society is also accepting direct donations in addition to the debentures.
“We are really going to start ramping this up,” Dalziel says.
Anyone interested in becoming a member is invited to attend the general meeting at 1 p.m. on Oct. 1, at the Army and Navy Club. You can also contact Dalziel directly at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
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