Thunder Bay CLE funded by annual fair, grants, loan

The recent controversy over the Canadian Lakehead Exhibition's boardroom bar raises questions about where the organization gets its funding.

The recent controversy over the Canadian Lakehead Exhibition's boardroom bar raised questions about where the organization gets its funding.

Documents obtained by CBC News show the CLE is largely self-financed.

According to financial statements, most of the CLE's revenue comes from the annual summer fair, the five day event pulls in about $700, 000.

The CLE also receives a $5,000 annual grant from the province.

The exhibition reported losses in 2009 and 2010, recovered slightly in 2011 and then posted earnings of more than $150,000 last year.

In 1998 the CLE was given an interest-free $1.3 million loan by the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund. It also received $1.8 million as a conditional grant. The loan is still being paid off, and last year the government gave the CLE a multi-year extension.

As for the boardroom bar that's brought the CLE some notoriety of late, the financial statements don't make it clear how much that costs.