Alberta Dispute Decision Published as Cricket Canada Virtual AGM Approaches

The written Endorsement of Koehnen, J of June 18, 2020 in Cricket Canada v. Alberta Cricket Council, 2020 ONSC 3776 (CanLII) has become available in recent days. This written opinion or Endorsement in this civil matter had not seemed to be publicly available in the early days after the outcome was reported on Canada Cricket Online on 19 June 2020.
The initial Canada Cricket Online coverage of the decision was based on a Notice posted on Facebook by the Alberta Cricket Council. I only noticed the written endorsement in the listing of Superior Court of Ontario written decisions on 26 June 2020. It is now 17 June 2020 when a virtual Annual General meeting of Cricket Canada is scheduled.
Outline of the Alberta Cricket Council v Cricket Canada Endorsement
Koehnen, J began with a three paragraph overall conclusion followed by five (5) paragraphs about the “Procedural History” of the case and is supported by twenty (20) paragraphs that form an “Analysis of Jurisdiction”.
“[1] This is an application under section 17 (8) of the Arbitration Act, 1991, S. O. 1991, c. 17 to challenge the jurisdiction of the Sports Dispute Resolution Centre of Canada (the “Centre”) and an arbitrator it appointed to resolve the dispute underlying this application.
[2] The standard of review on questions of jurisdiction is correctness: Dayco (Canada) Ltd. v. CAW-Canada, 1993 CanLII 144 (SCC), [1993] 2 SCR 230 at para. 14.
[3] For the reasons set out below I find that the arbitrator was correct in assuming jurisdiction and dismiss the application.”
Excerpt from: Cricket Canada v. Alberta Cricket Council, 2020 ONSC 3776 (CanLII), Court File No: CV20-640565-00CL, Date 20200618.
Some Thoughts
Some of the current leaders of Cricket Canada appear on the surface to be open about entering some legal actions in the name of Cricket Canada. In a dispute involving cricket in Saskatchewan, Cricket Canada prevailed in a decision where it was deemed up to “the members” of Cricket Canada, which are the Member Provinces of the national governing body of cricket, to decide on policy and organizational matters.
Word around the grounds at places such as Maple Leaf Cricket Club is that the Annual General Meeting of the Toronto and District Cricket Club *T&DCA) may not have been taking place on an annual basis in recent years. This appears contrary to the requirements of the Constitution of the T&DCA.
There is no indication via from the most recent Minutes of the Annual General Meetings of
Cricket Ontario (originally founded as the Cricket Council of Ontario) about any deficiencies in the T&DCA’s ongoing operations with respect to the league’s Constitution. The currently published version of the Constitution on the TDCA’s website dates back to February 2009.
I have heard some mentions about the lack of recent AGMs from some involved with member clubs of the T&DCA but such issues seem to be sensitive. There are some fears that players from a club that complains might not be selected for representative cricket.
The current CoVID-19 Pandemic has seen the Federal and Provincial/Territorial governments in Canada making use of Emergency Powers. Such powers appear to be limited in duration but the use of Emergency Powers by the T&DCA Board or the President with the approval of that Board appear endless under the current constitution.
It is not difficult to meet any requirement for a two thirds majority in important matters if there is only one vote by the President acting alone in some Emergency Situation approved by the Board. One wonders what notice of any such Emergency actions are duly advised to the Members.
One wonders what oversight is provided on such matters by Ontario’s recognized governing body for cricket? Someone should know based on the recent Cricket Ontario (CCO) AGM.
The Open Session where the Provincial Reports were summarized at the the last Cricket Canada AGM that I attended was a bit of a mess, although the written reports were available from each member province. I did appear at the venue for an AGM in Vancouver, British Columbia but failed on the Saturday to spot the notice board with details of the where and when of that CC AGM.
My fault, I suppose, as I entered the hotel from the main road that is in the hotel’s address rather than the service road entrance where taxis and limos drop off and pick up hotel guests. So on the Palm Sunday afternoon I mingled with some of the delegates after the gathering had come to an end.
Meanwhile the Cricket Canada AGM is due to be held today (27 June 2020) via video conferencing. There is some prospect that Provincial Reports section and the result of elections will be disclosed via livestreaming whilst other sessions are, appropriately, restricted to Board members and officials.
Perhaps the Provincial Reports should include, as a standard, a summary of AGMs hosted in the past year by each member league of the particular province ?
I wonder if there have been any Conflict of Interest disclosures made by any of the candidates in this year’s Cricket Canada elections for places on the Board. The incumbent President is assigned certain powers to decide and rule then advise the Board in a number of possible Conflict of Interest situations under th November 2017 policy. Possibly the authority assigned to the Elections Nominations Committee should be extended or strengthened to include any post- election investigative powers should any Conflict of Interest considerations be raised during an

AGM or Special AGM that includes an election to fill a Board vacancy?.
How well would the documented Cricket Canada procedure about Conflict of Interest, approved by the Cricket Canada board in November 2017, stand up to any legal challenge? That might depend upon the underlying statutory law and precedent cases as well as the interpretation favoured by an adjudicator or judge.
How will the recent decision about the Alberta situation impact today’s Cricket Canada AGM may be an issue on the more immediate horizon of today’s scheduled virtual meeting.
Eddie Norfolk Toronto,
27 June 2020.

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