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LA mayor ponders 2028 Games in exchange for youth funding

Associated Press logo Associated Press 1/06/2017

LOS ANGELES — The mayor of Los Angeles is talking to Olympic leaders about having his city wait until 2028 to host the Summer Games in exchange for funding for youth sports programs.

At a news conference this week, Mayor Eric Garcetti said he and Olympic leaders have discussed "what it would take for us to consider one of us going first and the other going second" — a reference to the contest between Paris and Los Angeles for the 2024 Olympics.

International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach wants to award both the 2024 and 2028 Games, and while each city has repeatedly stressed its bid is only for 2024, Garcetti is now acknowledging discussions with the IOC about 2028.

"My dream is not so much just to bring the Olympics here, but is to bring youth sports for free to every zip code," Garcetti said.

The IOC meets next week to discuss the possibility of awarding both Olympics later this year. Bach wants to avoid another bidding debacle the likes of which he's seen this year, with Hamburg, Germany; Budapest, Hungary; and Rome all dropping out. Los Angeles, meanwhile, was the U.S. Olympic Committee's second choice, after Boston initially got the nod but then saw that bid flounder because of lack of public support.

Officials from the LA 2024 bid did not have comment on the Garcetti news conference.

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