Ontario Summer Games bid may not get Essex County support

If Windsor decides to bid for the Ontario Summer Games in 2014, it might be tough to convince Essex County to help pay for it.

Councillors not convinced they'll benefit from contributing to Windsor's bid for games

City of Windsor will ask Essex County for financial contribution in the bid for 2014 Ontario Summer Games. MARKETWIRE PHOTO/BMO Financial Group/BMO Bank of Montreal (MARKETWIRE)

If Windsor decides to bid for the Ontario Summer Games in 2014, it might be tough to convince Essex County to help pay for it.

Windsor Mayor Eddie Francis was expected to make his pitch to county council last night, but decided to back off at the last minute.

Francis decided not to appear before county council because his report on financing the Games is not ready.

The county did contribute $300,000 to help host the International Children's Games this year.

But, Leamington Mayor John Paterson said he doubts if the county really benefited.

"What really happened out in the county as a result of having the ICG? I know in the municipality of Leamington, it was zero," he said. "I suspect if I went to the other municipalities it would be zero because it was held in Windsor, and that's where everything was."

Paterson said he'd like to see some proof first before contributing again.

"If we can find out the details, what was the return on the investment for the ICG? Was it worth our participation? And then have a look what we're looking for budget-wise for the summer games."

Another question county councillors want answered is why the Niagara Region decided to back out of hosting the summer games after winning the bid.

Niagara officials would only tell CBC News they could not meet the requirements for the bid.

If it's financially feasible to the host the games, and city council gives final approval, the mayor will ask for a contribution from county council.
It's what happened when the region hosted the International Children's Games..
Paterson says if the city moves forward in bidding to host the summer games, it would take a lot of convincing for him to approve a financial contribution.

If some of the events were actually held in the county, he says he would reconsider.


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