LOS ANGELES (CN) – The Los Angeles City Council passed a motion Wednesday to create an ad hoc committee to oversee the city’s bid for the 2024 Summer Olympics.
Councilman Herb Wesson of the city’s 10th District will chair the newly formed committee, and council members Mike Bonin, Joe Buscaino, Paul Krekorian, Mitchell O’Farrell and Curren Price round out the 7-member group.
Calling the games a “fantastic showcase” for LA, Wesson said that at the ad hoc committee’s first meeting on Friday the city administrative officer and city attorney will “weigh in” on any suggestions from other council members.
“This is the beginning. It is not the end. This is a great challenge. I can’t think of one time that this body has not stood up to any challenge that has come before it. So I am very confident that we will do our job and come up with a final product that protects the city,” Wesson said.
While council member David Ryu of the 4th District recalled his “awe” at watching the 1984 games in LA as a child, he asked if he could join the committee to voice his constituents’ questions and recommendations.
“I personally love the Olympics and I know a lot of constituents and residents who are also very excited about this opportunity, but there are a lot of projects, a lot of unanswered questions – not just about the financing but about community input,” Ryu said.
Wesson said there was no room on the committee for another member.
“This is serious and we want to make sure we protect the city financially,” Wesson said. “But we want to make sure that we actually lead and try to put the city in a better position than it is today. We would not do anything that would adversely affect the city because each and every one of us has constituents, just like you.”
Ryu said he was concerned about the impact of the games on a district that is already home to several tourist destinations, including Hollywood Boulevard, the La Brea Tar Pits, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Hollywood Bowl and The Grove. His district is also adjacent to Universal Studios.
He nonetheless joined the other 13 council members in voting to form the committee.
The vote comes a day after LA’s Olympic organizers released a bid book for its $4.1 billion plan to host the games.
Organizers propose building the Olympic Village close to downtown as part of the plan to revitalize the LA River.
The city would renovate the LA Memorial Coliseum to serve as the centerpiece of the games, alongside a downtown cluster of venues including LA Live, a planned Major League Soccer stadium as well as the Staples Center, Nokia Theater, LA Convention Center and the University of Southern California.
Hollywood, Santa Monica, Carson, and Pasadena are among the other LA County cities that would host events.
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