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California Legislature

California would cover over-budget costs for 2028 Olympics bid under new bill

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, left, celebrates with International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach and Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo. (Jean-Christophe Bott / AP)
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, left, celebrates with International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach and Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo. (Jean-Christophe Bott / AP)

State lawmakers will provide up to $270 million in guarantees under legislation unveiled last week should Los Angeles’ 2028 Olympic bid go over budget.

The measure, AB 132, aims to fulfill a promise from Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon (D-Paramount) and Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles) to give state support for the Olympic bid.

Cost concerns were the major worry when the Los Angeles City Council approved the 2028 bid last month. The 2028 Summer Games are expected to have a $5.3-billion price tag, and organizers believe corporate sponsorships, ticket sales and other revenue sources could cover expenses.

But city officials and bid organizers had asked the state to step in if the Games have a budget shortfall. Last year, state lawmakers overwhelmingly approved a similar measure, but it covered only a potential 2024 Olympic bid, so new legislation was needed. Los Angeles agreed to host the 2028 Games as part of a deal that awarded the 2024 Games to Paris.

Under AB 132, the state’s financial guarantee is $20 million more than promised in last year’s legislation, an increase that accounts for inflation, said Jeff Millman, a spokesman for the bid committee, LA 28.

“This is an LA 28 priority, and we welcome the Legislature's consideration during this session,” Millman said.

Lawmakers will have to work quickly to pass the measure this year. The deadline for bills to pass both houses of the Legislature is Sept. 15.

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