The City of Regina will not have to pay the full amount after organizers of Reimagine Conference 2020 cancelled Patrick Moore’s appearance at the event in May.
However the city will still have to cough up over $6,000, less than the initial $10,000 price tag plus travel expenses of $1,400 and taxes.
Mike O’Donnell, co-chair of the committee and city councillor, explained that they had to pay a non-refundable deposit of $5,700 back in December, however organizers knew that was the case at the time.
Since they terminated Moore’s contract, there are no other fees to be paid other than the $5,700 deposit and taxes estimated at $500 to $600.
O’Donnell said they initially picked Moore because they felt he was an interesting speaker, adding his speeches on sustainability change caught their attention.
He mentioned the topic stated in Moore’s contract was “energy and sustainability – debunk of climate change”, saying the committee looked past the debunk part since it was not the topic they were wanting from Moore’s speech.
“He had the right to go in that direction if he chose, but that was not what we asked him to do,” O’Donnell told reports on Wednesday at city hall.
“What we’re trying to do is a sustainable environment with energy we can maybe use in the city, and not talk about other things. That’s why he was terminated.”
The contract allowed the committee to not have to pay the full amount since there was a termination phase included in the document.
O’Donnell admitted there are no plans to replace Moore at this time since there are a number of presentations scheduled for the conference.
Since he was removed from the conference, Moore has been given a second opportunity to speak after media outlet Rebel News provided him with his own event in Regina on May 19 – the day before the Reimagine Conference begins.
O’Donnell said he has “nothing to say about it” and that he will not be attending since he’ll be at the Reimagine Conference’s welcome reception. He also hopes to make an announcement that night regarding what he calls “an interesting competition.”
O’Donnell added they are waiting to hear back from the National Speakers Bureau regarding how much they will have to pay in taxes.
This year’s Reimagine Conference theme is “Roadmap to Sustainable Cities.”