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Mayor Marty Walsh on Kirk & Callahan: Boston isn’t a racist city 01.26.17 at 9:48 am ET
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In recent weeks, several ESPN personalities have derided Boston as a racist city. In an appearance on Kirk & Callahan Thursday, Mayor Marty Walsh said the accusations trouble him.

“That stuff bothers me. When I read that, I get upset about it, because in the past we’ve had problems,” he said. “Obviously Bill Russell’s problems have been very well documented. Other folks’ have been very well documented. It’s another issue that we’re working on. I don’t like the label of having a racist city. I think it’s important for us to be a fully inclusive city.

“It’s not even about athletes coming to our city to play in the city. I think it’s about making sure that when people come to our city –– I know and I feel that Boston is a world class city. One of the best cities in the world. And to have people label us? Yeah, that bothers me. It should bother all of us.”


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Boston Mayor Marty Walsh says he won’t sign guarantee with U.S. Olympic Committee 07.27.15 at 11:10 am ET
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Martin Walsh

Marty Walsh

Mayor Marty Walsh, who has been a staunch supporter of Boston’s bid to host the 2024 Olympics, said Monday that he would not sign a contract with the U.S. Olympic Committee that commits the city to covering any budget overruns.

Contracts with host cities include a stipulation that the city will cover any additional costs, but in the wake of widespread criticism of and uncertainty about the financial impact to the city, Walsh decided to take a hard stand.

“If committing to signing a guarantee today is what’s required to move forward, then Boston is no longer pursuing the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games,” Walsh said in a press conference, noting that the USOC has pressured him to agree to sign the contract if Boston were to win the bid.

“I cannot commit to putting the taxpayers at risk,” he added.

Boston 2024 organizers have said they plan to have insurance to cover any possible overruns, but that remains a contentious issue.

Despite his hard-line stance, Walsh said he still would like to see Boston host the Games.

“I still feel the same way I did three months ago,” he insisted.

Read More: Boston 2024, Marty Walsh, Olympics,
Mayor Marty Walsh on D&C: ‘Zero tolerance for spending taxpayers’ money’ on stadiums, venues for Boston 2024 05.28.15 at 9:02 am ET
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Martin Walsh

Martin Walsh

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh joined Dennis & Callahan Thursday morning to talk about Boston 2024, specifically taxpayers’ money when it relates to the Olympics potentially coming to Boston. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

A report obtained by the Boston Business Journal highlights the need for public spending for the games to come to Boston. Walsh tried to clarify the report Thursday.

“What the report was based on the document that was submitted to the USOC for the Olympics to come to Boston, it’s based on a concept,” said Walsh. “The final bid that would be put in, which would be I think December or January, that is going to be the actual plan with what is going to be put forth. In that actual plan is going to have to spell out how you’re actually going to pay for the venues, and where the venues are going to be located and how the financing would work.”

Walsh then went on to explain his view on taxpayers’ money and how it will be used.

“I have zero tolerance for spending taxpayers’ money on building stadiums or building venues for the Olympics,” Walsh said. “Now as far as infrastructure, I view that differently. The reason why I view that differently is regardless of where the venues are in the City of Boston, if we improve the infrastructure whether it is the roads, a side walk, a crosswalk, lighting, whatever the case may be, that is something that is beneficial to residents of our city, or even if there is a venue outside of Boston. Let’s say there is a venue in another city in Massachusetts, and there is infrastructure there — those infrastructure improvements are beneficial short term and long term for the residents of that area. That is money that should have been spent.

“When I look at the MBTA, I see an opportunity here — let’s assume we get the Olympics, and [in] 2017 they announce Boston as the Olympic city and we’re going to move forward — now we have a date of 2024 that we need to make sure that the MBTA is running properly, is upgraded, is state of the art because of the volume of people that will want to be moving around the city and the Commonwealth. We need to have a reliable transportation system. That forces us, and that forces all of us to work together to improve the MBTA.

“If we don’t get the Olympics, what I am afraid of with the MBTA is [what we] are having [this winter] in 2024 — we’re having the same conversation we had this year [that] we had in 2010 when we did some legislation in the state house and in 1997. Two other times we were working to fix the MBTA. This gives us an end date that we need to make it move forward. The conversation of the Olympics over the next two years allows us, Boston, to go around the world and promote our city on a world stage. Whether or not we get the Olympics or not, there’s a benefit for us to be involved in the conversation.”

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USOC ‘excited’ with choice of Boston as American city to compete for 2024 Games 01.08.15 at 7:18 pm ET
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TD Garden could be an Olympic venue if Boston wins the bid for the 2024 Olympic Games. (Getty Images)

TD Garden could be an Olympic venue if Boston wins the bid for the 2024 Olympic Games. (Getty Images)

The first step has been taken toward Boston becoming an Olympic city.

On Thursday evening, the United States Olympic Committee announced that it has chosen Boston to be America’s representative in the worldwide competition to host the 2024 Olympic Games.

Boston beat out Washington, D.C., Los Angeles and San Francisco as the USOC made the announcement after a meeting at the Denver International Airport. It is the first time Boston will be America’s choice to beat out other bids from across the globe. Los Angeles has hosted The Games twice previously, in 1932 and 1984.

“We’€™re excited about our plans to submit a bid for the 2024 Games and feel we have an incredibly strong partner in Boston that will work with us to present a compelling bid,” said USOC Chairman Larry Probst, in a statement.

The statement also indicated that “a spirited discussion and more than one round of voting” took place over several hours.

Boston’s official reaction was no surprise.

“This selection is in recognition of our city’€™s talent, diversity and global leadership,” Boston mayor Marty Walsh said in a statement.

“It is an exceptional honor for Boston to be chosen as the U.S.representative in the running for the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Our goal is to host an Olympic and Paralympic Games that are innovative, walkable and hospitable to all. Boston hopes to welcome the world’€™s greatest athletes to one of the world’€™s great cities.”

Now, comes the hard part.

The group heading up “Boston 2024″ will be required to fill in the details of its limited Olympic venue and transportation plans, gain public support and convince many skeptics that Boston can put on the world’€™s most prestigious international sporting event in just nine years.

Boston enters a fray that could include some of the most high profile cities in the world, including Paris, Rome, Hamburg or Berlin, Budapest, and Istanbul.

The final decision on the 2024 Games won’t come until the International Olympic Committee convenes at a meeting in Lima, Peru in 2017.

Among the existing venues that could play host are TD Garden, Harvard Stadium, Conte Forum (Boston College) and Agganis Arena (Boston University). The IOC’€™s new bidding guidelines, known as Agenda 2020, could help Boston’s bid. Last year, the IOC approved guidelines pointed toward holding down the cost of staging the Olympics, making use of existing facilities as well as low-cost temporary venues.

Read More: 2024 Boston Games, Boston, IOC, Larry Probst