IOC Changes Bid Process For Prospective Olympic Host Cities
The IOC today agreed on "radical changes in how and when Olympic hosts are picked" as the organization "looks to avoid negative headlines and angering local taxpayers following referendum losses and excessive spending on white elephant venues," according to Graham Dunbar of the AP. The group announced that future bidders "could need to win a referendum before entering a race" to land a Games. That comes after the IOC was "stung by recent public votes in Europe and Canada" related to the '26 bidding. Milan-Cortina on Monday won the vote for the '26 Games over Stockholm-Are, the only other bidder in the race. Future Olympic bidders "will be required to use existing and temporary venues and infrastructure, while being steered away from costly construction projects." Additionally, a "new flexible campaign timetable" will end the current rule of hosts being voted on seven years in advance, and it is possible there "might not even be an election at all" in some cases. New panels will be created for both the Winter and Summer Games "which will recommend one or more candidates for an election." That goes along with IOC President Thomas Bach's "wish to avoid 'too many losers'" (AP, 6/26).
SALT LAKE READY TO TALK: Andy Beerman, the mayor of Park City, Utah, and a member of the Salt Lake Olympic Exploratory Committee, predicted that his group along with the IOC and USOPC will "'reignite conversations' late in the summer" about a future bid since the '26 decision has been made. Beerman said that it was too early for Park City to "launch a broad community discussion about the Olympic bid since details about the process and timeline are not set." The Park City area during the '02 Salt Lake Games "hosted upward of 50 percent of the competition." Meanwhile, Beerman said that a potential Salt Lake City bid for the '26 Games "would have been strong" against Milan-Cortina and Stockholm-Are. However, he acknowledged that the USOPC has "good reasons" to wait until at least '30 since its focus is on the '28 L.A. Games (PARK RECORD, 6/25).