SACPA Session - Lethbridge Taxpayers will be on the Hook if Calgary Gets to Host the 2026 Winter Olympics – Are there “Trickle Down” Benefits?

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The Southern Alberta Council on Public Affairs (SACPA) presents a session with Canadian economist Tom Sindlinger as he discusses the ramifications of a successful Calgary Olympic Games bid.

Lethbridge Taxpayers will be on the Hook if Calgary Gets to Host the 2026 Winter Olympics – Are there “Trickle Down” Benefits?

Date:                    Thursday, September 13, 2018
Time:                    Doors open 11:30 a.m., Presentation 12 noon, buffet lunch 12:30 p.m., Q&A 1 – 1:30 p.m.
Location:              Royal Canadian Legion (north door) 324 Mayor Magrath Dr. S. Lethbridge
Cost:                    $14 buffet lunch with desert & coffee/tea/juice or $2 coffee/tea/juice. RSVP not required

While most agree the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympic Games was an overall success and good for the city, Alberta and Canada, the bidding cost alone for the 2026 Games will be at least $30 million and the expenses for hosting the Olympic Games, if Calgary is chosen, could top $8 billion, including interest. Hosting the 1988 Olympic Games cost less than $1 billion and turned a profit.

The Alberta and Federal Governments have made their contribution to the 2026 Calgary Olympics conditional on a Nov. 13, 2018 City of Calgary plebiscite. The non-binding plebiscite will offer two choices – for or against Calgary hosting. There are other key points to be sorted out as the city can’t rely completely on its 1988 Winter Olympic infrastructure – a new hockey arena and other facilities are needed – and there are still questions about hosting some events outside of Calgary, possibly in Whistler, B.C., and Edmonton.

While hosting the 2026 Olympics and Paralympic Winter Games will no doubt generate a lot of economic investment and activity in the City of Calgary, the speaker will argue that all Alberta taxpayers will end up covering the expenses to the tune of several billion dollars for operations, infrastructure and paying off the “mortgage” for such Olympics, including a whopping $1 billion for security measures. He will also address whether or not Albertans are likely to get lasting “bang for their buck” from such expenditures.

Speaker:               Tom Sindlinger

Tom Sindlinger is a Canadian economist with a focus on the marketing of natural resources and transportation, and governance. He is a former elected PC member of the Alberta Legislative Assembly and has successfully completed 18 international projects in 12 countries for both private and public entities (such as the Canadian International Development Agency; The National Democratic Institute in Washington; and, The Jimmy Carter Center in Atlanta).

Moderator:         Dylan Purcell

For more information on the Southern Alberta Council on Public Affairs, visit the SACPA website.

Room or Area: 
Royal Canadian Legion


Trevor Kenney | | 403-329-2710 |