David Black speaks about Victoria’s bid for the 2022 Commonwealth Games. Since B.C. Finance Minister Carole James rejected the funding request from the Games bid committee last month, the bid has new figures showing less risky financial scenarios for B.C. and local taxpayers. Arnold Lim/Black Press

David Black speaks about Victoria’s bid for the 2022 Commonwealth Games. Since B.C. Finance Minister Carole James rejected the funding request from the Games bid committee last month, the bid has new figures showing less risky financial scenarios for B.C. and local taxpayers. Arnold Lim/Black Press

New figures more rosy for Commonwealth Games bid in Victoria

Provincial commitment far less; municipalities stand to come out ahead: economic analysis

There’s no stopping David Black when it comes to seeing Greater Victoria take its best shot at hosting the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Given a firm ‘not now’ in August by B.C. Finance Minister Carole James on the matter of the province agreeing to provide $400 million in funding for the Games, as well as a financial guarantee for any potential cost overruns, the Victoria bid committee chair immediately launched Plan B.

READ: UPDATE: Province will not fund Victoria’s Commonwealth Games bid

That entailed putting together a team of 10 local business leaders who have personally guaranteed any cost overrun. Besides himself, others in the group include retired car dealer Bob Saunders, McDonald’s restaurants owner Ken Taylor and former Westshore Rebels president Doug Kobayashi.

“Private individuals are stepping up to take on cost overrun guarantees, which is proof positive that there won’t be one,” Black said, adding that no successful business person would voluntarily take such a risk on if they felt there was a chance of it happening.

Black, who owns community news media company Black Press (publisher of the News), has previously stated that the 1994 Commonwealth Games in Victoria made a profit of $20 million. He indicated that the 2022 Games could make a profit of as much as $75 million.

The financial contributions of the provincial and municipal governments have also been adjusted, based on an economic impact assessment by University of Victoria business professor Brock Smith.

No line item is needed in the budget update being prepared by the NDP for presentation next week in the legislature, Black noted.

“We’re talking $25 million a year for five years,” he said. “That’s one-twentieth of one per cent of their annual budget.”

The other $275 million in the $400 million request of the province would be recouped as tax revenue, according to Smith’s research, which used expected job increases as a basis. Information from the bid committee budget, 1994 Games attendance figures and B.C. Statistics and Statistics Canada figures saw Smith determine that municipalities stand to make an additional $102.4 million in property tax revenue if the region were to host the 2022 Games.

READ: DAVID BLACK: Greater Victoria’s 2022 Games bid fine-tuned, still alive

While he admitted that meeting with James anytime soon appears to be out of the question, given her workload on the budget, Black said there is some flexibility in the bid process.

The committee has to submit its bid book by Sept. 30 to the Commonwealth Games Federation.

The federation plans to review the bids in October and invite bidders to make a presentation in London in November. The final decision isn’t expected until sometime the following month.

“[James] could always change her mind and back out right up until December,” Black said.

Localized polling done recently on the West Shore found 65 per cent of respondents in favour of Victoria hosting the Games. That pairs up with the roughly 70 per cent from surveys done before the government turned down the funding request.

“I do think that that 65 per cent will jump up over the next few weeks as we get the word out,” Black said.

“This is the right thing to do from a political point of view and from a policy point of view because it brings so much money to town.”

editor@vicnews.com

Commonwealth Games

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

One person is dead after a camper van caught fire Thursday morning in Victoria's Beacon Hill Park. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)
One person dead after vehicle fire in Beacon Hill Park

Investigation into Victoria death in early stages

Protestors against old growth logging gather in front of the courthouse in Victoria on Thursday morning. (Don Denton/Black Press Media)
Fairy Creek protesters gather at Victoria courthouse

Logging company seeks injunction to remove blockades near its Port Renfrew operation

Victoria police are searching for a federal offender who is wanted Canada-wide after his statutory release was suspended. (Courtesy of Victoria Police Department)
Victoria police searching for federal offender wanted Canada-wide

Warrant issued after offender’s statutory release suspended

A recently finished $4.3-million taxiway extension at the Victoria International Airport (not pictured) is unusable because of a blind spot. (Black Press Media file photo)
Blind spot leaves Victoria airport’s new $4.3-million taxiway extension unusable

Solution has been put on hold by COVID-19 pandemic, says airport authority

Lansdowne Middle School.
(Black Press Media File Photo)
Health Minister Adrian Dix looks on as Dr. Bonnie Henry pauses for a moment as she gives her daily media briefing regarding COVID-19 for British Columbia in Victoria, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
7 additional deaths and 542 new COVID-19 cases in B.C.

Provincial health officials reported 18 new COVID-19 cases linked to variants of concern

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of March 2

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

(Black Press Media file photo)
POLL: How’s your butter?

Recent reports have some Canadians giving a second look to one of… Continue reading

Some Canadians are finding butter harder than usual, resulting in an avalanche of social media controversy around #buttergate. (Brett Williams/The Observer)
#Buttergate: Concerns around hard butter hit small B.C. towns and beyond

Canadians find their butter was getting harder, blame palm oil in part one of this series

Construction takes place on Bamfield Main in early February 2021. (PHOTO COURTESY CTV NEWS)
Ongoing Bamfield roadwork unrelated to planned $30M fix

Construction by Mosaic unrelated to $30M upgrade ordered in wake of fatal bus crash

B.C. research reveals how pandemic has changed attitudes towards sex, health services

CDC survey shows that 35 per cent of people were worried about being judged

The Regional District of Nanaimo’s board is forwarding a motion on illegal dumping to the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities’ upcoming annual general meeting. (Kane Blake photo)
Island communities asked to join forces in seeking help fighting illegal dumping

RDN resolution to be forwarded to Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities

Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon speaks in the B.C. legislature, describing work underway to make a small business and tourism aid package less restrictive, Dec. 10, 2020. (Hansard TV)
B.C. extends deadline for tourism, small business COVID-19 grants

Business owners expect months more of lost revenues

Mid day at the Vancouver Port Intersection blockade on March 3, organized by the Braided Warriors. (Zoë Ducklow photo)
Anti-pipeline blockade at Vancouver intersection broken up by police

Demonstraters were demanding the release of a fellow anti-TMX protester

Most Read