660 NEWS (Calgary) – A high-level source confirmed to 660 NEWS Ottawa is willing to contribute up to $1.75 billion towards a potential Olympic bid, however, there are two conditions.
Calgarians have to vote “yes” in favour of hosting the games and the funding would have to be matching, so both the province and/or city would have to spend more.
BREAKING NEWS – a close source can confirm Ottawa would be willing to contribute up to $1.75 Billion towards Calgary's potential Olympic bid. No formal announcement has been made and the money would be conditional on a "yes" vote in the plebsicite. #yyc @660NEWS @BTCityNewsCGY
— Ian Campbell (@news_ian) October 26, 2018
The source also said that all three levels of government are at the table and officials are seeking more engagement out of the province.
This may turn out to be a big win for the pro-Calgary 2026 side, where the government had traditionally been willing to contribute up to 50 per cent of the operational costs.
A previous estimate had pegged the operational cost at $3 billion.
Friday’s news combined with the provincial government’s previous announcement that it would be willing to contribute $700 million and the city’s share has yet to be announced.
Mayor Nenshi issued a statement that said he’s shocked by the reported number from the federal government.
In a release, he said, “we were surprised to see this number reported for a proposed federal contribution to a potential Calgary 2026 Olympics as negotiations are still underway.”
— Ian Campbell (@news_ian) October 27, 2018
Everything though would fall apart if Calgarians reject the idea of playing host for the second time in the Nov. 13 plebiscite.
There is no formal announcement planned as of yet for voters, but in a recent news conference, Tourism Minister Mélanie Joly said that they were aware of the looming vote.