Watch CBS News

New Jersey nonprofit in fight with Brown Paper Tickets over funds raised for first responders

NJ nonprofit says website used for fundraiser owes them over $3,000
NJ nonprofit says website used for fundraiser owes them over $3,000 02:46

MONTCLAIR, N.J. -- For nearly a year, a nonprofit in New Jersey hasn't been able to get money raised for families of fallen first responders.

It claims it's held up with a website it trusted to sell tickets for its annual event.

CBS New York is pushing for answers and went to Montclair to learn more about the impact of this organization.

"Frank was just a great firefighter. He was the ultimate family man," Montclair Fire Chief John Herrmann said of Capt. Frank Quadrel.

Herrmann was with Quadrel responding to a fire on New Year's Day in 1991, when he lost his life.

In the difficult days that followed, The One Hundred Club of Montclair stepped in with financial support for his family.

"It was a tremendous help. The family had so much to think about and do, it was comforting to know they were there for everyone," Herrmann said.

Michael Byrne, the club's president, said that has been the mission of the nonprofit since it was founded in 1966.

"To maintain a fund for policemen, firemen should they be injured or killed in the line of duty, or for their family members to assist them in their time of need," Byrne said.

The club also gives out scholarships. Byrne said all the money raised comes from an annual dinner. He used the website Brown Paper Tickets to sell tickets for the December 2022 event.

But, nearly a year later, Byrne says he hasn't received the money -- $3,510.

"It reflects as owed to us in the account. We can't get an answer why. We can't get an answer when it will be made available to us and that's very concerning," Byrne said.

Byrne said the organization used the website to sell tickets for its event in 2021 and had no issues. But he said this time around, after repeated attempts, he finally got an email response that says, in part, "Brown Paper Tickets is working to catch up on all overdue payments owed to event organizers, including those owed to you."

The Better Business Bureau rated the company an "F" and on its website, and there is a list of consumer complaints.

CBS New York reached out to the company. It responded to our email noting it was acquired by "," writing, in part, " is now in the final phases of completing this acquisition, which will accelerate Brown Paper Tickets' delayed payments to organizers."

Any remaining impacted event organizers will receive final payments between Jan. 25 and March 31.

"Turn over the assets of this organization to us so we can invest it properly. That's what our members expect. That's what this community deserves and it's time, after almost 365 days, to do that," Byrne said.

In a press release, also stated:

"As an condition of asset acquisition, any remaining affected event organizers must be paid in full. Additionally, under the terms of the acquisition, assisted Brown Paper Tickets with transitioning all newly listed events to the Secured Funds Program for event organizers and ticket buyers in August 2023. This program secures all Brown Paper Ticket event ticket sales until the event organizer receives a quick payment after the event. Brown Paper Tickets will also reintroduce live phone support sometime in 2024 for their clients worldwide."

The New Jersey Attorney General's Office sent CBS New York the following information:

"The Division of Consumer Affairs has a record of 11 complaints against Brown Paper Tickets between 2020 and 2023.  Eight were referred to Office of the Attorney General in Washington State, one was a duplicate complaint, and two were closed without further action taken by the Division. The company is based in Seattle, Washington."

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.