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Capital Pride 'accounting irregularities' an 'international scandal,' local business owner says

One local entrepreneur who is owed $24,000 from Capital Pride says the possible financial trouble the festival is having is an embarrassment and a scandal.

This comes after the festival said "accounting irregularities" have prompted an investigation and that a police probe may be pending as vendors come forward saying they were never paid for the work they did on the festival.

Sebastien Provost is the president of production company House of SAS.  He did pro-bono production work but is owed a cheque for purchasing the festival's alcohol.

He says when he went to the bank to cash the cheque he was told that his money was never in the account it was to be taken from in the first place.

Provost says the financial problems aren't just affecting vendors and companies.

"A bar manager, a stage manager, an artist manager.  They were small amounts, like 500 bucks."  he said.  "Their cheques are bouncing so their rent cheques have bounced.  I got two calls like that this week." 

He says cheques to prominent performers and artists are also not going through.  He says he's received calls from Ru Paul's Drag Race who've said they haven't been paid.

"It's an international scandal is what is now."

Provost, who says he briefly sat on the board some time ago, says he finds the issues disheartening, saying the festival’s organizers and volunteers have worked hard to elevate the festival ahead of its 30th anniversary next year.

"I'm not sure how this organization is going to be able to recover from something like this."

Capital Pride has not responded to CFRA's request for an interview.

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