10/24/2012 11:59 EDT | Updated 12/24/2012 05:12 EST

Elliot Lake mall owners want public funding to attend inquiry

The company that owns the Algo Centre Mall in Elliot Lake says it can't afford to attend the public inquiry that will examine what happened.

In June, a portion of the mall roof collapsed, killing two women and injuring dozens of people.

On Friday, the mall owners will ask for funding so they can participate in the January 2013 inquiry which will probe the circumstances surrounding the tragedy.

Those who want to appear at that inquiry have to apply to inquiry commissioner, Paul Belanger, who will be in the community on Friday.

Two company officials with Eastwood Mall Incorporated, owner of the Algo Centre mall, said they can't participate unless the province picks up the tab.

The company faces several lawsuits, with statements of claim totaling about $60 million.

Robert Nazarian and Levon Nazarian will ask for funding for four lawyers, accommodation in Elliot Lake and money for photocopies, faxes and the retention of experts.

Other parties are also seeking funding to participate in the inquiry, including the Non-Profit Retirement Residences of Elliot Lake and the Elliot Lake Mall Action Committee.

Family members of the women killed in the disaster have already been granted standing at the inquiry.