City council has approved a budget for hosting the 2020 Saskatchewan Summer Games. Lloydminster is expecting to gain a number of benefits from the games, including a legacy of new or upgraded facilities.

Of those upgrades, the only facility not on city property is the race track at Lloydminster Comprehensive High School. The track is to undergo patching and resurfacing at a cost of $125,000. City council is exploring options to receive help for those costs from the LPSD. Mayor Aalbers says that an agreement already exists between the city and the LPSD Board of Education, which they will be taking a look at.

“We’ll be examining that and sharing with the Summer Games committee to ensure we get the maximum amount for dollars allocated. We will be searching that out with the school board and ensuring the Summer Games committee is aware of it. If it lessens the amount we need to spend, working with the school board, we’ll appreciate that,” says Aalbers.

The city has made a commitment to improving sporting facilities across the city. Money provided by Saskatchewan Lotteries through Sask Sport will be used for operating the actual games, such as costs for the games manager.

The agreement approved by city council also limits expenditure changes of 3% or greater. Accumulative changes to the capital and operating budgets over that amount will have to be approved¬†by both city council and the Games Council. Mayor Aalbers is hopeful that there won’t be any cost overruns from the games and says the city will be working with the games committee to prevent them.

“The local games committee felt they could deliver projects, hopefully, for less than $500,000, working with contractors, supporters and businesses in kind wherever that’s possible. If they can shave ten per cent of that cost and come in at $450,000, that would be terrific. That money would be in turn used for the games, and in turn if there is excess money, that would become the legacy money.”

Aalbers says that many games well-managed have left legacy money and hopes for the same next year. He says we may see local businesses step up to help with the games, but admits that it all depends on where the economy is at by then.