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Council unlikely to decide on Calgary Olympic bid until next year
A new timeline for the 2026 Olympic bid has bought more time for Calgary council to warm up to the idea.
Published Thursday, July 20, 2017 7:20AM MDT
It likely won’t be until 2019 before council moves forward again on Calgary’s Olympic bid because the International Olympic Committee has given bidders more time.
Mayor Nenshi told the media on Wednesday that council will likely be rejecting the idea of an Olympic bid at Monday’s meeting.
During that meeting, the Calgary Bid Exploration Committee will be presenting its final report.
It has already said Calgary should expect a $2.4B shortfall if it hosted the 2026 games.
Because of that, Nenshi says he doesn’t think council will sign off on the deal. A decision may even end up coming after the city sees the IOC’s bid city contract.
But he also said that the IOC delay has given the city more time to mull over the possibility of a return to the Olympic stage.
Nenshi’s biggest concern, however, is the cost to taxpayers.
“If the IOC is making a bunch of money off of international sponsorships and international media deals, then the host cities can’t be stuck with any operating deficits. So, we need to figure out a better way of doing it, but I think the IOC understands that.”
Councillor Sean Chu, meanwhile, wants the public to have a more direct say in whether or not a bid should happen.
He wants it decided in a direct vote, possibly in a plebiscite question at the ballot box this fall.