Friday, May 20, 2011

BCHL Governors Voting on Return to Chilliwack:

By Tyler Olsen, Chilliwack Times

May 20, 2011

An announcement on the return of the British Columbia Hockey League to Chilliwack could take place this week and possibly even Tuesday, according to BCHL president John Grisdale.

Chiefs Development Group (CDG) principals Moray Keith and Jim Bond met Thursday morning with Vernon Vipers owner Duncan Wray and Coquitlam Express owner Darcy Rota to hammer out a deal that would see the Quesnel Millionaires play in the CDG-owned Prospera Centre next year.

League owners are now voting yes or no to allow the Millionaires to move to Chilliwack under conditions agreed to last Thursday.

Grisdale said on Friday that owners have two weeks to respond with their votes, but that the league hopes that the process will be expedited and a result known by Tuesday.

""Tuesday we should have everything counted and done and be able to officially make an announcement," said Grisdale.

The main sticking point between the two sides has been an agreement on a transfer fee that CDG would pay to the other owners to make up the difference between the value of the club in Quesnel compared to one in Chilliwack.

"Chiefs Development Group have been a partner in the league below. They're well known and tremendous partners," said Grisdale. "Those aren't the issues. It's the valuation of the franchise, what it's worth, longevity of the lease, all that kind of stuff."

If the owners vote no, Grisdale said the parties could go back to the negotiating table, but that time is of the essence.

"It's just two parties coming to an agreement [on the valuation] and I would suspect that we will come to a satisfactory solution one way or another," he said.

Grisdale can't say what vote has been recommended by the league's franchise committee but he added "I think you could guess based on the fact they've gone to the governors for a vote."

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