Salt Lake City 2034 Olympics expected to cost $2.83 billion, funded without state or local taxes

Jun 10, 2024, 10:51 AM | Updated: 7:09 pm

SALT LAKE CITY — The leaders of the Salt Lake City-Utah Committee for Games announced the operations costs for the proposed 2034 Games would be an estimated $2.83 billion, all funded without any state or local tax dollars.

The United States is one of a few countries that uses an Olympic committee to find private funding for the Games instead of using 100% federal government support. This means Utahns won’t be paying any taxes to support the Olympic Games.

“And we’ve included a $210 million expense contingency which when we compare in ’02 that’s the actual (amount), there’s no contingency there,” said committee president and CEO Fraser Bullock.

“The IOC also makes a significant financial contribution to the success of the Games, along with a contribution of services and value-in-kind,” the committee noted in a statement Monday.

Salt Lake City was named the preferred host of the 2034 Winter Olympics in November, with an official announcement expected sometime in July, possibly on Pioneer Day.

The 2002 Olympics, held in Salt Lake City, cost approximately $2.84 billion in operating costs when adjusted for inflation. Comparatively, the 2034 Games are expected to cost $2.83 billion in operating costs.

The Games won’t require any new permanent venues for 2034 even though there are 40% more events in 2034 compared to 2002.

“There are two key areas beyond core games operations and the first one is the joint marketing program with the USOPC (United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee),” Bullock said.

The USOPC has a sponsorship program and they sell sponsors every year whether or not there are games in the U.S. but when the Olympic Games are held in the country, they’ll combine with the host city for marketing.

“They’ll combine with us. We come up with a joint program so we’re selling together for joint sponsorships and then we have a revenue share with them and a sponsor sales and support program that goes along with that…” Bullock said. “As a result of that this $905 million is not part of our core operations budget but when you go to the bid file it’s integrated in there.”

The second area outside of operation costs is the Games’ legacy.

“This is something that we hope to achieve that after we break even, we know we’re going to break even because there’s a fundamental rule of Olympic games that we live by, which is you spend less than you take in and that’s what we live by and we have a “must-have” rather than “nice-to-have” philosophy relative to the budget,” Bullock said. “But we are hopeful to go beyond breaking even and that we would ideally, if we go beyond break even would be able to fund a Games legacy for sport and youth programs and organizations primarily obviously our two great sport organizations in the state are the Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation and the Utah Sports Commission.”

The committee estimates $260 million will go to legacy funding for sport and youth programs and organizations.

Neither the legacy amount nor the joint marketing program amount are included in the total operating cost.

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Salt Lake City 2034 Olympics expected to cost $2.83 billion, funded without state or local taxes