Alderman Manny Flores officially became a cheerleader for the 2016 bid today when he backed off his own legislation to protect Chicago taxpayers from unlimited exposure from the 2016 bid and introduced an Olympics_Oversight_Ordinance. He has apparently forgotten his earlier bill, introduced to the City Council at its June meeting. That bill, which had 11 co-sponsors, would’ve limited our Olympic exposure to $500 million.
Now Flores wants “transparency, accountability and fiscal responsibility” from the city and the 2016 Committee (which would morph into the Operating Committee if we get the games).
First, we don’t think he has the votes to pass this window dressing and, more importantly, even if he did IT IS MEANINGLESS. The Olympic outfit is accountable to NO ONE. The Host City Contract makes clear how things are to be run. Number One – we are on the hook for ALL expenses. Number Two – The IOC GETS WHATEVER IT WANTS to ensure the successful completion of the games.
All this talk of transparency is a sick joke. The city of Chicago is notorious for flouting the Freedom of Information Act on a routine basis. The 2016 outfit will not be subject to FOIA requests in any case. And in the end, having “transparency” only means we’ll have a clear path to ruin and scandal.
Alderman Flores is giving himself and his colleagues – which now includes the Better Government Association – a chance to say they fought for the people. They are clearly for the games coming to Chicago, regardless of the consequences, regardless of our sorry history of official corruption and cronyism and despite the wretched state of local finances. If we get the games – it will be “Obscene in 16”!