2010 news update

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Whilst New Delhi's concerns seem to be around preparations rather than finances, Vancouver unveils its new budget for the 2010 Winter Games.

New Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit has said that she is not totally satisfied with preparations for the 2010 Commonwealth Games, but that she is not nervous as things would be in place before the event next year. She also claims that funds will not be a problem. "I think everybody is trying to do their best. It's about India's prestige, " Dikshit said. A number of Commonwealth Games projects are running behind schedule including the construction of stadia and hotels. Meanwhile, The Globe and Mail newspaper in Canada has revealed that the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games Organising Committee (VANOC) has unveiled a revised, slightly more expensive operating budget. The budget, increased from C$1. 63bn, has been balanced with a contingency fund of C$77m, a boost of C$27m. VANOC officials said the higher budget was mostly due to accounting measures rather than a significant boost in spending, although, according to the Globe and Mail, the cost of putting on events at the various venues, including a better anti–doping facility, has risen by C$29. 3m. All of the increased expenses come in areas related to transportation, accommodation, Games services and sport programmes. VANOC has cut about C$25m in expenses from other areas, including technology, workforce and revenue, marketing and communications programmes. Among those cuts are C$2m in pay raises VANOC had planned to give its staff in 2009. Employees will now get two per cent this year rather than three per cent. Vancouver 2010's original C$100m contingency fund is now down to C$50m. It will be increased by C$27m to stymie fears that revenue could still decline further than expected as the economy tightens. The final contingency fund will be C$77m. But officials said any contingency funds that are not needed will be used to restore some operational cuts, such as cancelling the medal ceremonies at Whistler. Over the next year VANOC will spend C$1. 3bn in the local economy to buy services for the Games, with its partners spending an equal amount.

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