Turnout for advance vote on Olympic bid tops Calgarys 2013 election

Turnout for advance vote on Olympic bid tops Calgary\s 2013 election
Yes vote in plebiscite doesnt guarantee Olympic bid, says Nenshi
Calgary council will not pursue the Olympics at any cost even if a plebiscite shows public support for the Games, Mayor Naheed Nenshi said on Wednesday. 

"At some point after the plebiscite, and I don't know exactly when, council will then vote on whether to continue or suspend. So if there's a no vote, I imagine that council will vote to stop the work. If there's a yes vote, that doesn't necessarily mean yes at all costs," he said.  

For eight months, every two weeks the assessment committee met, and we walked out in front and said, “This is what were going to do. This is what were going to commit to.” And we had to continually shift that line in the sand, and three or four days before advanced polling, when people have actually already voted, were now saying: “This is the deal. How could you not communicate this… How can you not support this? This is the deal in front of us,” and thats not fair to Calgarians because we promised them that wed do that.

"It allows the work to continue but council still reserves the right, if there's not a good deal there or it doesn't work for the City of Calgary, to pull out of the process."

He said the metric for a decision will be 50 per cent plus one, but that he would prefer a stronger mandate in either direction. 

JEREMY: Youre listening to Sprawlcast. My name is Jeremy Klaszus and Im the founder and editor of The Sprawl, and Sprawlcast is a collaboration between The Sprawl and CJSW 90.9 FM. We are broadcasting from Calgary on Treaty 7 land. Sprawlcast is a show for Calgarians who want more than the daily news grind, and today were going to go deep on a topic you might have heard something about: Calgarys Olympic bid.

The non-binding plebiscite is on Nov. 13, but advance voting started Tuesday and continued on Wednesday. 

MORAN: This is a total of $390 million in cash that we are asking the City of Calgary to contribute. It will result in $4.4 billion of investment coming into this community, not just to hold the Olympic and Paralympic Games – to create jobs for people that are unemployed today, increase our GDP growth, and to put our city and community on the global stage and build our reputation for years and years to come.

There were long lines at some polling stations on Tuesday. According to the city, 28,923 Calgarians cast a ballot in person and another 7,738 voted through mail-in ballots. 

“Certainly, the venues would benefit from hosting the Olympic and Paralympic Games because the accessibility would be improved dramatically for the 11 facilities that currently exist from the 1988 Games,” he said. “Accessibility standards have significantly changed since the late 1980s.”

On Wednesday, another 84 mail-in ballots were received and 25,435 voted in person, bringing the total number of advance ballots cast to 54,442.

“From a psycho-social perspective, the ability to show that persons with disabilities performing on the highest level could raise the understanding of what people with disabilities are capable of, which could translate into improved hiring practices or improved social inclusion,” he said.

Nenshi said he's "super happy" with the high turnout, pointing to low turnout as the worst possible outcome for the plebiscite. 

Coun. Woolley stays on as Olympic chair, but thinks deal is half-baked

Asked about a CBC Calgary poll that shows a majority don't support a bid, the mayor remained optimistic. 

Calgary 88 executive hopes for 2026 Winter Games in spite of political divisions and secrecy

"It's a great pollster, Janet Brown; it's a very small sample size, just 200 people in Calgary," he said, although the actual number was 243. 

Typical host city contracts between the International Olympic Committee and the cities awarded Olympic Games include a clause that states “the responsibility for all aspects of security in relation to the Games (including the financial, planning and operational aspects thereof) lies with Host Country Authorities, which shall take all necessary measures in order to guarantee the safe and peaceful celebration of the Games.”

"There's lots of polling going on and I've certainly seen polls that are much, much closer."

When asked who would be responsible for any cost overruns tied to the Games, the mayor said the city is working out details on the bid and the proposed funding agreement with other levels of government. 

The contracts also state that the host city, along with each country’s National Olympic Committee and organizing committee, are responsible to help ensure security and “shall take further measures (such as the deployment of relevant authorities responsible for safety, security, law enforcement and private security contractors) to complement those implemented by Host Country Authorities.”

Strong turnout on second day of advanced voting in Olympic plebiscite

LIVE EVENT: CBC Calgary Olympic Games Plebiscite Town HallIf you live in Calgary, find out what you need to know before you cast your vote in the Nov. 13 plebiscite by tuning in to the CBC Calgary Olympic Games Plebiscite Town Hall.

There is a strong plan in place that includes contingencies related to security for the Games. The plan, including specific security requirements and costs, was developed through the collaboration of security partners and stakeholders, including local police and the RCMP. The security budget provides an accurate cost, he stated.

Featuring a knowledgeable panel and hosted by the Calgary Eyeopener's David Gray, we will hear from both sides and take questions from the audience. Panellists include:

“And today,” says Linda, “my dad would be saying exactly that: ‘You just have to go for it. And do it even better.’ He would never want us to accept anything less. It requires courage, resilience, innovation and thoughtful execution. He would never want Calgarians to stand down to those who are intent on negativity. They are not the ones who will lead this city through a recession, now or ever. Go for it, and do as much good as you can, he’d say, and that’s exactly the way he left this world.”

Not sure which way to vote in the Olympic plebiscite? Watch CBC Calgarys town hall

It'll take place at Calgary's new Central Library (800 3rd St. S.E.) on Wednesday, Nov. 7. Doors open at 6 p.m., with rush seating available at 6:15 p.m. All of the reserved tickets have been claimed.

He’s right. While Calgary will pitch in only $390 million over eight years, it will receive $4.4 billion in funding from outside sources, including at least $1.1 billion from the International Olympic Committee, $1.435 billion from the federal government, which is specially earmarked for a large multi-sport event, and $700 million from the provincial government.

It is a priority for CBC to create a website that is accessible to all Canadians including people with visual, hearing, motor and cognitive challenges.

I hoped we could emulate Calgary, make Canada proud and inspire deep love of country and uncommon patriotism, wrote Furlong. During our first meeting, and countless questions, after a brief pause, he looked over at me and said, Dont try to emulate Calgary. Be better than us, take this as far as you can and do as much good as you can.

Calgarians line up at the advance polling station in Bowness on Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2018, to cast their ballot in the Olympic plebiscite. Leah Hennel / Postmedia

“I think my dad would say, 1988 was a tough road as well. The economy was tough, there was a lot of a negativity around the bid for the ’88 Games. And we all know how that turned out. No one says now that the ’88 Olympics was a mistake. No one. So, let’s learn from ourselves. Let’s go for it.”

More than two times the number of Calgarians cast advance votes in the Olympic plebiscite than they did in the 2013 municipal election.

Advance polls for the Nov. 13 Olympic vote closed on Wednesday at 8 p.m., and new numbers from the city show early voting eclipsed numbers from the 2013 election but were still behind advance ballots cast in the 2017 vote.

More than 21,000 Calgarians cast Olympic plebiscite votes on 1st day of advance polling

Advance polls for the Olympic plebiscite were only open on Tuesday and Wednesday, but the city’s numbers show a total of 54,442 people cast their votes on hosting the 2026 Olympic Winter Games.

But advance voting numbers for the Olympic vote were still well below totals in the 2017 Calgary municipal election, with 74,965 Calgarians casting early ballots in the 2017 election, the city said.

Canmores town council votes in favour of supporting Calgary 2026 Olympic bid

A total of 18 advance vote locations were set up across Calgary for the plebiscite, while the city had 26 locations for the 2017 municipal election.

“We know how to build stuff, we know how to do that,” Woolley said of any possible capital project overruns. “But we have no guarantees on the operations side — it’s the operations side that we have no clarity or commitment on.”

The non-binding Olympic vote asks Calgarians whether they are for or against Calgary hosting the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.

“So never mind that security is the big cost, and the big one that Calgarians worry about the most . . . in terms of overruns, but there’s all sorts of other guarantees around ticket sales, all of those other things that we haven’t put in place.

Earlier this week, the city unveiled electronic tabulator machines to tally the plebiscite results.

Two views on the Calgary 2026 debate make their pitch on Global News Morning Calgary

But some early voters reported problems with the machines, noting that ballots were being rejected, which kept lineups of people waiting at the McKenzie Towne Hall voting station.

Woolley emerged from the Oct. 30 meeting saying time had “run out and I think it’s time that we move on,” presenting a recommendation asking council to halt all work on the Olympic file and cancel the Nov. 13. plebiscite.

Those who will be away from Calgary on plebiscite day, as well as those who will be prevented from voting in person due to a physical incapacity, can request a mail-in ballot online, by calling 403-476-4100, by faxing 403-476-4101, or by visiting the Elections and Census Office at 1103 55th Ave. N.E.

But in the end, Calgarians managed to put on one of the most successful Games in Olympic history, collecting a surplus and reinvesting in a legacy fund. And while the city received millions of dollars in new facilities, Joynt said organizers saved money wherever they could, rallying a massive volunteer corps and using a lot of existing facilities, like University of Calgary residence halls for athletes’ housing.

Requests for mail-in ballots must be received by noon on Nov. 13. Completed mail-in ballot packages must be received by the Elections and Census Office by 4 p.m. that day.

Jerry Joynt, senior vice-president of communications for the 1988 Olympic Organizing Committee and the Calgary Olympic Development Association, says another Winter Games in Calgary would bring a much-needed economic and community boost to the city, particularly at a time when political divisions are creating skepticism.

If Calgary votes no in the 2026 Olympic plebiscite, whats next?

Voters must provide authorized identification at the voting station, such as an Alberta driver’s licence or an Alberta Identification Card that confirms their name and current residential address.