The Canadian Taxpayers Federation announced its support Monday for the Swedish city of Stockholm’s bid to host the 2026 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games, instead of Canadian competitor, Calgary.
“Calgary doesn’t need to waste billions of tax dollars to be a great city,” CTF Alberta director Franco Terrazzano said.
“Calgary households will save thousands of dollars if Stockholm gets the Olympics.”
The CTF released numbers last week suggesting that hosting the Games could cost each Calgary household at least $2,000.
The taxpayers’ group previously said its city of choice is one with a model that requires business funds to support its bid, rather than leaving taxpayers on the hook for billions of dollars. Stockholm’s coalition government has said no taxpayer money will be involved in its 2026 Winter Olympic bid.
“If the IOC wants to host a sporting event in Calgary, they should fund it 100 per cent without taking a cent from the taxpayer,” Terrazzano said. “If that was the case, we’d have been pleased to endorse Calgary’s bid. Sadly, it is not.”
WATCH: Draft plan for Calgary to host the 2026 Olympics expects the cost to be approximately $5.2 billion
Erin Waite of the No Calgary Olympics campaign, meanwhile, said that even if the distribution of costs behind Calgary’s $3 billion publicly-funded bid isn’t yet known, it doesn’t really matter.
“We don’t have polling numbers, but we’re watching and talking to people like everybody else and we’re just finding it hard to find people who are onside,” she said. “Mainly it’s that issue: whether this is the right project now for Calgary.”
The province has said it will kick in $700 million, but so far nothing has been guaranteed by the federal government with just two weeks to go before advance plebiscite voting.
Calgarians can vote in the plebiscite Nov. 13.