Beacon Hill’s top three leaders, worried about the costs of hosting the Olympics in Boston, said Monday that they are formally seeking an outside consultant to independently analyze the financial impact of bringing the Summer Games to the city in 2024.
Governor Charlie Baker, House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo, and Senate President Stanley C. Rosenberg had previously said they would seek such an analysis, but on Monday provided further details as part of a formal request for proposals.
The three leaders said the consultant would be chosen by the end of April and have a report completed by July, at a cost of $250,000.
Their joint proposal seeks an independent assessment of the costs, potential revenues, funding mechanisms, insurance requirements, taxpayer risks, required infrastructure investments, and the potential responsibilities of the state, if Boston were to host the Games.
“Hiring outside experts will help us ensure that Massachusetts taxpayers will be protected against raids on the public treasury to subsidize the Olympics,” Rosenberg said. “Hosting the Olympics is a great opportunity to put us on the world stage, but we can’t afford a taxpayer funded subsidy for the privilege.”
Boston 2024 has proposed a $4.7 billion operating budget, one that would be funded by Games-related revenue such as sponsorships, television broadcast rights, and ticket sales. Another $3.4 billion would be spent on nonoperating costs, primarily the athletes’ village. This portion of the budget, Boston 2024 says, would be funded through public-private partnerships. Those figures do not include public transit and security costs that would have to be paid by federal taxpayers.
Mayor Martin J. Walsh, a leading supporter of the effort to win the Games, applauded the announcement from Beacon Hill.
Michael Levenson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.