Tuesday, the United Independent Party announced that it has officially partnered with Yes On 1, the organization that led the anti-gas tax initiative last year, to run a campaign for a ballot question that would protect taxpayers from the cost of a potential Boston 2024 Olympics. It’s a case of strange bedfellows, since the UIP opposed Question 1, but the groups agree on the need for preventing taxpayer money from being used for the Olympic games. The initiative would bar state funding from going towards anything other than transportation improvements.
Yesterday, during a radio debate with No Boston Olympics, Boston 2024 CEO Rich Davey was asked what he thought about the UIP initiative, responding, “I would vote yes on that, absolutely.” This is big news, since while Boston 2024 had previously said they’d support a statewide referendum, they’d been hazy on the specifics. Endorsing the UIP initiative, which is broad and binding, signifies that they’re willing to truly commit to not using taxpayer money for the Games.
So if even the bid committee supports a ban on using public money for the Olympics, why aren’t our elected officials getting on board? The legislature recently voted down an amendment to the same effect, instead opting to require a hearing before they spend any taxpayer money. How about the legislature listens to the will of the voters and passes the ban, so citizens don’t have to waste the time and money on a ballot initiative that does it for them?