LOS ANGELES — As Los Angeles sets in motion a plan to host the 2028 Olympics, city leaders are striving to reassure taxpayers that the plan will not be a financial albatross.
"I am satisfied that the taxpayers of Los Angeles are as protected as they can be," said City Councilman Paul Krekorian, who chairs the Council's finance committee said.
The City Council unanimously approved the plan Friday for the city to host the Olympics in 2028, four years later than its original bid. The 2024 games will go to Paris.
The Olympic Committee imposed an Aug. 18 deadline to approve agreements that outlined the city’s financial responsibilities for hosting the 2028 games.
“The Ad Hoc Committee on the Summer Olympics did a great deal of work to ensure that taxpayers would be protected under the 2024 bid," Krekorian said. "All of the work we did has been carried forward to this bid, along with the added benefit of having greater insurance coverage and more projected marketing revenue for the 2028 games."
In addition to the Ad Hoc Committee, an LA2028 has been working on efforts to bring the event to the city.
Los Angeles has tied the plans to build out its mass transit system to its Olympic bid. Boosters say the entire plan is structured so that anything built will have a use post-Olympics. Many Olympic cities have spent billions of dollars to construct facilities that remained unused in years after the event -- leaving cities with debt they had no income to repay.
Krekorian says city officials have thought through this possibility and constructed a plan that will ensure that does not happen to Los Angeles.
"There will always be some element of risk involved, but Los Angeles is the only city in the world that has hosted two financially successful Olympic Games," Krekorian said. "This will not negatively impact the city's General Fund or any ongoing infrastructure projects. Our parks and the children who use them are still benefiting today from the revenue raised in 1984. We have every reason to believe the 2028 games will benefit the city financially."
The added bonus is Los Angeles residents wanting the Olympics enough that they were willing to support items like an additional transportation sales tax in November to pay to get the work done in time for the event.
Los Angeles officials -- including those at the regional LA Metro transportation agency -- have also lobbied Congress hard to get federal funding to pay for projects during an era in which the federal government has been reluctant to fund transportation projects.
“We negotiated the deal of a lifetime to bring the Games back to America, create a new Olympic legacy for the next generation, and deliver access to sports and fitness programs to every community in Los Angeles,” Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said Friday in statement. The "unanimous vote by the City Council is a resounding show of confidence in our fiscally responsible plan for 2028, and more evidence of Angelenos’ passion to return the Games to L.A.”