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CBC Ottawa

Canada Day organizer back at City Hall

The last time Angelo Filoso was in the news, it was in the context of a report from the City of Ottawa's auditor general, Alain Lalonde. In it Lalonde detailed problems with Canada Day festivals at Andrew Haydon Park in 2009 and 2010. Among the highlights: a diesel fuel spill, potentially dangerous electrical hook-ups, and unauthorized helicopter rides. Filoso organized both events.

Last year the city even sued Filoso along with his organization, the Italian-Canadian Community Centre of the National Capital Region Inc. (Filoso is well-known in Ottawa's Italian community; among other things he's publisher of the city's Italian-language newspaper.) That matter has since been settled out of court. The terms of the agreement are being kept confidential.

Apparently Filoso really likes organizing Canada Day festivals, because he's the force behind another one this summer. This time the three-day event is to be held at Queen Juliana Park, near Dow's Lake. The park sits on federal land, so it belongs to Public Works. The department says it only just found out about the dispute between the City and Filoso. Asked about whether they have any qualms about working with Filoso, the Public Works replied via e-mail:

"PWGSC requests that the organizers obtained all required permits from the municipality or other authorities having jurisdiction for the planned event to be held on PWGSC land.The proponant sic for the Canada Day Event will have to meet such obligations before a license is granted."

According to the city, Filoso has been in contact about the festival, but has not filed the necessary paperwork for said permits. Nor has he formally invited Mayor Jim Watson to attend the event, as advertized. So says the mayor's office, which adds Watson will likely be quite busy that day. 

Neither Angelo Filoso nor anyone from www.canadadayfestival.com has returned calls or e-mails about this story. 

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