Delayed Stadium Decision Could Damage New York’s 2012 Bid

The New York Sun reports that two key lawmakers said Tuesday they are reluctant to authorize a new venue for the 2012 Summer Olympic Games until after a decision on the host city for the 2012 Games has been made.

Joseph Bruno, Republican leader of the New York Senate, and the Democratic speaker of the New York Assembly Sheldon Silver, have the power to block the proposed $2-billion sports complex and convention centre on Manhattan’s far West Side, which would be the Olympic Stadium should New York win the bid for the 20122 Summer Olympic Games.

Lazaro Benitez a spokesman for New York 2012 told the New York Sun Tuesday, “if the stadium is not in place before the vote then we do not get the Olympic Games”.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has said that if New York City is to remain in contention for the 2012 Summer Games the stadium must be approved before the International Olympic Committee (IOC) chooses the host city on July 6.

Silver said lawsuits connected with the stadium should be resolved before a vote is taken. But Bruno added that a state decision on the project could wait until after the July 6 vote in Singapore.

Bruno said, “I have said to the mayor, and repeatedly, we will do whatever it takes to accommodate the Olympics if they make a positive decision, and I hope they do, to come to New York City”.

Silver suggested that the GamesBids.com BidIndex ranking of potential Olympic hosts had made him even less eager to bless the stadium. The latest BidIndex shows that of the five cities bidding for the 2012 Summer Olympic Games New York has dropped to fourth.

However the latest odds from Centrebet, Australia’s leading sports bookmaker show New York in third place at 14-1, a drop from 10-1 on April 26.

Paris’ odds are 1-5, London 7-2, Madrid 16-1 and Moscow 50-1.

But it’s not all downhill for New York. The city’s bid will be getting a boost when the Apprentice airs on Thursday.

One of the two finalists is in charge of running the NYC2012 Athlete Challenge. Reports say New York Governor George Pataki joins Donald Trump at the opening of the Challenge, which is hosted by Olympian Bruce Jenner and features other Olympians.

Six-time Olympic Gold medallist Michael Phelps says, “The Apprentice is a wonderful vehicle to highlight New York’s candidacy for the Games in 2012. Set in this wonderful city and viewed by millions, competition is at the centre of this program and there is no better competitive event than the Olympic Games”.