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Government Support is Essential for Sports Owners and Organizers

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A poster against the Sion bid is pictured ahead of a local vote on a bid for the 2026 Winter Olympics Games in Sion, Switzerland on June 6, 2018. Photo: Reuters © This is copyrighted material owned by Digital Chosun Inc. No part of it may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without prior written permission.

By Evan Weiner |

Former National Basketball Association Commissioner David Stern once said that a successful sports franchise needed three things: Local government support, a large local TV deal and corporate support. Government was important because local politicians could make life simple by passing legislation to make stadium or arena building easier. That is happening in California now for Los Angeles Clippers ownership in a quest to build an arena in Inglewood as environmental regulations to construct an Inglewood arena have been eased. The same applies on a national level for sports organizers.

Italy’s bid to host the 2026 Winter Olympics appears to be on the ropes with the announcement that the national government does not intend to put up any money for the event. In Sweden, the national government does not appear to want to spend any kronas to help the Stockholm area land the 2026 Winter Games. The Calgary bid for the 2026 Winter Olympics is facing major hurdles with a November 13 non-binding referendum asking local residents if they want the event being a major obstacle. Calgary Olympics backers and city leaders are upset that someone on the city council leaked a document which claimed a Calgary Games would cost more than what is being sold to the public. Calgary elected officials were angrier about the leak than the possibility that a Calgary Olympics would cost more than 5.2 billion loonies. Taxpayers’ would be picking up a substantial amount of the tab.

Meanwhile, the Conservative Party leadership in England is throwing its full weight behind a bid that would feature England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and Ireland hosting the 2030 World Cup. Prime Minister Theresa May said various Football Associations would have to put together a bid that would satisfied all the soccer people. The May government will put up pounds to support it. In sports, government support is essential.

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

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