OTTAWA (Hypebot) – As part of a plan to crack down on temporary foreign workers, last summer the Canadian government added a $275 processing fee on top of a $150 work permit requirement for each and every member of a band and crew from outside the country playing in Canadian venues. Some non-profit venues and festivals were exempt, but small clubs – who often pay bands less than the new combined fees, were not.
One calculation put the cost to fans at $4.25 per ticket per band member in a 100 seat club. Prior to the changes, the fee was $150 per band member, maxing out at $450, and the fee allowed venue owners across Canada to share the nominal cost or book them separately at no extra charge.
The outcry from all sectors of the live music community was swift, and apparently Ottawa listened as the fees have been dropped.