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Olympics Costs Soaring? No Biggie.

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Mayor Garcetti announcing the LA Olympic Bid's Athlete's Commission. By Eric Garcetti (LA 2024) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

By week’s end, the International Olympic Committee is supposed to get the final applications from the bidders who want the 2024 Summer Olympics. Los Angeles and Paris seemingly will have the proposals that the IOC likes, including local taxpayers picking up the bills for cost overruns and no plans to allow local residents to vote on whether they want to subsidize the event.

The same cannot be said for Budapest, Hungary as the threat of a referendum exists or Rome, Italy where the city’s mayor Virginia Raggi is against subsidizing the IOC’s big sports party.

There are two Olympics that are in the planning stages and neither should be giving Olympics backers in LA or Paris any comfort that local organizers can pull off holding the Games without soaking local taxpayers who will be left holding the debt.

The South Korean government has been asked for about a half billion dollars in US funds to get the facilities and infrastructure needed to hold the 2018 Winter Games done and then there is the 2020 Tokyo Summer Games. There is a great deal of concern that the Tokyo Olympics could end up costing about $29 billion in US money and a local government panel released a report that changes needed to be made because the costs for construction are soaring.

The panel recommended venues for rowing and canoeing, swimming and volleyball be moved outside of Tokyo to alternate sites. The panel also suggested the volleyball and swimming contests to take place in a renovated existing venue in downtown Tokyo not far from the Olympic Village.

Tokyo 2020 executive Yoshiro Mori is insisting changes cannot be made.

“These sites were chosen over years and approved by the sports federations and International Olympic Committee,” Mori said. “It would be extremely difficult to overturn this.”

Mori knows the IOC probably would not be on board with messing with the IOC Olympics.

By Evan Weiner For The Politics Of Sports Business

This article was republished with permission from the original publisher, Evan Weiner.

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