Aussie taxpayers could be forced to pay more than $1 billion in compensation after Victoria pulls out of 2026 Commonwealth Games
Premier Daniel Andrews’ bombshell decision to cancel the Games on Tuesday has shocked the sporting world with the prospect of huge compensation payouts.
Victorian taxpayers could receive more than $1 billion in compensation after pulling the plug on hosting the 2026 Commonwealth Games.
Premier Daniel Andrews has given up on hosting global sporting events in regional Victoria, with a forecast price quoted from $2.6 billion to $7 billion in just one year.
The Victorian Government has confirmed that Ernst & Young was involved in the initial $2.6 billion estimate outlined in last year’s state budget and the latest business case will be released subject to legal advice.
The cost of breaching the Games contract is yet to be settled, with further negotiations between the state government and organizers following Tuesday’s decision.
Aussie Commonwealth Games stars such as (left to right) Emily Seebohm, Georgia Bohl, Emma McKeon and Bronte Campbell were not only shocked by Tuesday’s axing announcement – the body behind the Games is reeling.
Games organizers are now locked in talks with the Victorian government – and Premier Daniel Andrews (pictured) could soon have very bad news for taxpayers.
Mr. Andrews declined to estimate how much it might cost state taxpayers to pull out of the deal but promised that the figure would be calculated.
Almost a decade ago, the Queensland government investigated the cost of canceling the 2018 Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast and determined it to be more than $1 billion.
The figure was released in 2018 estimates and is likely to be higher due to skyrocketing inflation in Victoria and limited time for organizers to find replacement hosts.
Queensland has discovered that axing the 2018 Gold Coast Games will leave the state open to more than $1 billion in compensation claims.
This is not the first time the Andrews government has spent taxpayers’ money to break a signed agreement.
A $642 million termination settlement was paid to scrap Melbourne’s East West Link Road project despite Mr Andrews announcing the deal could be canceled for nothing before the 2014 state election.
Mr Andrews said his government had considered other options to reduce the Games’ price tag, including reducing the number of sports or moving the Games to Melbourne, which would still cost about $4 billion.
Premier advised that no contracts have been signed for major games projects and that costs have been minimal to date.
State Opposition Leader John Pesutto said compensation was an inevitability and urged Mr Andrews to consider his position.