Feds contribute $5 million to Olympic bids 

The federal government is providing $5 million to support the Toronto and Vancouver-Whistler bids for the 2008 and 2010 Olympic Games.

In an announcement that involved four cabinet ministers and the Canadian Tourism Commission, the government announced it would be providing $2.5 million partnership contributions to each bid.

"We are pleased to partner with the Provinces of Ontario and British Columbia, the cities involved, as well as private sector ogranizations supporting the bids," Industry Minister Brian Tobin said in a release dated April 6.

Last fall the federal government announced it would contribute $500 million toward a $1.5 billion redevelopment of Toronto’s waterfront, which is a major part of the Toronto Olympic bid. The City of Toronto and the Ontario government each pledged to contribute $500 million to the redevelopment.

"Work in Toronto for the Olympics would include waterfront rehabilitation that will result in a series of job creation projects for Canadians," said David. Collenette, Minister of Transport and MP for Don Valley East in Toronto.

"Hosting the Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver and Whistler in 2010 would help create enduring legacies for sport development, our host communities, the province of British Columbia and Canada," said Victoria MP David Anderson.

"Tourism is one of the driving industries of the 21st century," said Jim Watson, president of the Canadian Tourism Commission, "and the Olympics and Paralympics have always been recognized as a significant boost to tourism. The federal support strengthening the bids will be used to help market Toronto, Vancouver and indeed Canada as an ideal site to host the 2008 and 2010 Olympics."

The week before the federal government announced money for the Vancouver-Whistler bid, B.C. Lottery Corporation became a corporate sponsor of the bid with a $1.5 million contribution. At that time the Vancouver-Whistler 2010 Bid Corporation announced it was approximately two-thirds of the way towards its fund-raising goal of $22 million.

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