Alberta and Canada Governments: Please don’t write blank cheque to #IOC

Pressure seems to be mounting on the City of Calgary to negotiate with their partners to share in the costs of #Calgary2026. Even though Calgarians haven’t been asked what we think of any of this, we can raise our voices to say “No” to a blank cheque to the #IOC.

BidCo hasn’t any idea what #Calgary2026 will cost, yet the City has to come to terms on a Multi-Party Agreement. That Agreement has Calgary plus the funding partners who sign the #IOC’s Host City Contract. This Multi-Party Agreement outlines who will pay for what.

Because we know that the contract states the #IOC will not be responsible for any cost overruns, someone on our side of the agreement must. No matter which level of government agrees to cost overruns and all of the financial risk, that means taxpayers will be on the hook.

For all the talk of the #IOC’s reforms in Agenda 2020, it’s ridiculous that cost overruns remain solely the responsibility of the Host City.

Calgary Council committed to stopping the Bid process if Calgary taxpayers had to carry the risk of cost overruns. This is a principle in black and white, agreed to by the full Council. Therefore, if the Alberta Government, our Federal Government or Canmore, are not willing to cover those cost overruns, the Bid cannot go forward.

September 10th is one of those off-ramps when the City of Calgary could vote to end the Bid process.

We believe that many, if not most, Calgarians do not want to see government debt and taxes increase for the sake of a three-week event in 2026, for the benefit of the #IOC. It is difficult to imagine that Albertans outside of Calgary want to cover the cost of Calgary’s party for the #IOC. It’s impossible to imagine there are many Canadians outside of Calgary and Alberta who want to help Calgary out while watching their taxes increase as a result.

NOW is when we have to let our provincial MLAs and federal MPs know that we want them to stand up to the City of Calgary in these negotiations.

We want all levels of our government to say, “If the #IOC is so committed to reform, let them carry the risk. If the #IOC needs Calgary so badly, let them show how much they want their party in our city.”

Letters to the Alberta Government should be addressed to Minister of Culture and Tourism, Ricardo Miranda, Minister of Finance, Joe Ceci, and copy your own MLA. You can find their contact info here.

As well, with the United Conservative Party in process of selecting candidate MLAs, a letter to your riding UCP candidate, once established, would be helpful to remind them of the need to hold the line on taxes and reduce, not add to, debt. To see if your riding has a UCP candidate yet, check here.

Letters to the Government of Canada should be directed to Minister of Science and Sport, Kirsty Duncan, as well as Calgary MP, Kent Hehr and copy your own MP. You can find their contact info here.