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City council commenting on Pistons' sale to local owners.
The Steinbach Pistons' move to local ownership is getting the thumbs up from Steinbach city council. The team announced Tuesday it has become a community-owned, not-for-profit, organization.
Mayor Chris Goertzen says, "I think it's great news. When you have local people who have a vested interest and invested their own dollars in a team and an organization like this, it can only help the team get better and really have community support. We look forward greatly, as council, to even further success than what they've seen in the last number of years."
Deputy Mayor Jac Siemens says local, community ownership is the way it should be. "I worked for the City of Steinbach Parks and Recreation department when the Steinbach Hawks were here in the 80's. It was external ownership and they only lasted a number of years and they moved on. Now that we've got this in place, I think this is great and I think it will only speak very highly of Steinbach and what we can all do in our community."
Councillor John Fehr says, "I think it's going to be great for the city. The Pistons have been here for about four years now. They've struggled under the leadership they had. I think it's always good if you can get the community behind them and, with as many community people involved now, I think it's going to build momentum for them and make us more of a contender here as well."
Goertzen adds the community ownership model has worked very well for some other MJHL franchises and thinks it will be good for Steinbach, considering the calibre of people who will lead the organization.
Following Tuesday's City Council meeting, the team announced they have formed a Board of Directors. Grant Lazaruk has been named President of the Steinbach Pistons with Claude Vielfaure appointed Vice-President. Other members of the board include Bob Smith, Norm Paisley, Pat Penner, Darren Klassen and Ron Schellenberg. The board was appointed by the 36 Tier-A investors and will be changed every two years.
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