Report: Olympics Committee Flush With Cash

Bid completely funded by private donations, report shows

By Phil Rogers
|  Monday, Aug 31, 2009  |  Updated 3:40 PM PDT
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Chicago 2016 Venue Plans

Marcus Riley

Lets hope Patrick Ryan tips well.

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Chicago's Olympic bid committee has spent just over $48 million dollars so far in efforts to land the 2016 Summer Games.

The committee's "Stewardship Report", released Friday, says while the budget anticipated revenues of $73.2 million, 2016 has actually taken in nearly $77 million. The report notes that the bid has been funded 100 percent by private donors, making it unique in a four-city competition where the other three candidates receive some level of public funding.

In addition to the $48.3 million spent by the bid committee on their campaign so far, the report says another $13 million has been invested in World Sport Chicago, the 2016 offshoot designed to promote youth sport in the city.

The report states that while no taxpayer dollars have been spent to fund bid operations, no donors have been given any promise or commitment of future business. The committee has received $72.8 million in contributions and pledges from private donors, another $2.7 million in revenue from events, and $188,000 in income from the sale of 2016 merchandise.

Of the donors, 29 have given $1 million or more; another 29 fall in the half-million plus column; 121 have given in excess of $100,000.

The Olympic committee has paid its 57 staff and 12 contractors $9.4 million to date. Olympic Games venue and operations experts have received $4.6 million. Public relations and media relations have tacked on another $1.1 million. While four members of the 2016 staff make $250,000 or more, the report notes that CEO Patrick Ryan, Vice-Chairman Mike Roberts, and Bill Scherr, director of sport, took no salary.

One of the largest cash outlays was $5 million to the USOC, with another $650,000 to the International Olympic Committee. The document notes that both organizations assess fees and charges to cities bidding for the Olympic Games, to support their respective costs in conducting the selection process.

Airfare has cost the committee over $1 million as staffers pushed Chicago's Olympic dream worldwide. The report says 2016 representatives have traveled more than 9.3 million miles. While CEO Ryan has flown more than 240,000 miles in promotion of the bid, 2016 says he has personally paid for more than 70 percent of his own travel.

The 2016 committee has reimbursed the City of Chicago over $134,000 for city services such as police and Streets and Sanitation, most of which were used when the IOC Evaluation Commission visited last April.

Hill and Knowlton, the international public relations giant, was the committee's largest contractor, receiving over $3 million. The Chicago architecture firm Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill received over $1.2 million for architecture and planning. HOK Sports Facility Group was paid just over $1 million for venue planning services.

Chicago 2016 Stewardship Report

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