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The State Duma on Tuesday approved the first reading of the bill on State Corporation for building Olympic Games facilities in Sochi
The State Duma lower house of the Russian parliament on Tuesday approved the first reading of the bill on State Corporation for building Olympic Games facilities in the Black Sea town of Sochi, and the development of this health resort. Earlier, the house Committee on Economic Policy, Entrepreneurship and Tourism recommended lawmakers to support the document. Deputy chairwoman of the committee Yelena Panina, who had co-authored the bill, said "the main idea is to set up a single center for building Olympic facilities for the 22nd winter Olympic Games and 11th winter Paralympic Games in Sochi in 2014." In this connection Duma speaker Boris Gryzlov mentioned the problem of attachment of land pilots for construction. "All the issues concerning the necessary moving of any land plots within the zone of Olympic facilities will be coordinated with the owners of these land plots and structures. It's the necessary condition set by the leaders of our country. Everything will be OK," Gryzlov said. The Corporation will also ensure the remodeling of facilities to develop Sochi as a health resort. Its property will be built with property fees of the Russian Federation, the Krasnodar Territory and Sochi, the revenue derived from the operation of the Corporation, donations and charity, and might include other legal sources. The adoption of the bill implies allocations from the federal budget and the budgets of the Krasnodar Territory and Sochi. Under the bill, the Corporation submits to the Russian president quarterly and annual reports on the spending and the results of checks by authorities. The Corporation is to be governed by the Observer Council, the Board and the Director General. A watchdog committee will be in charge of financial control. The Observer Council will comprise 11 members. Russian President Vladimir Putin assured International Olympic Committee President Jacques Rogge at a meeting in Sochi on September 27 that two bills would be approved during the autumn session of the parliament: the Olympic law proper and the law on state corporation, which are essential for the preparations for the winter Olympic Games in Sochi in 2014. The head of state expressed the hope that "legislative support would be timely, without disruptions." The "Olympic" package prepared at the Duma within a tight timeframe will enable Russia to host the winter Olympic Games and the winter Paralympic Games in a fitting manner, one of the co-authors of the bill, deputy speaker of the house Vladimir Katrenko said. "The Olympic Games are not just a significant factor of the economy or additional stimulus for developing domestic sports, it's also a reason for pride, and an extra opportunity to improve Russia's international image; raise the country’s' prestige," Katrenko said. "The winter sport festival in Sochi must be organized at top level, so that the winter Olymipcs-2014 be an unforgettable, vivid event," he said. According to the deputy speaker, "one can state with 100-percent confidence that private funds will account for some 70 percent of spending on the Games." The state budget and extra-budgetary sources are to allocate 12 billion dollars for preparations for the Games. The bill envisions direct presidential control over the use of the Olympstroi corporation's funds. Sochi emerged victorious from the Olympic bidding contest at the IOC session in Guatemala July 5. It won in a competition with South Korea's Pyeongchang and Austria's Salzburg. Director General of the Sochi-2014 Bid Committee Dmitry Chernyshenko was accompanying the IOC officials during their trip to Sochi last week, who had arrived to inspect sites for the construction of sports facilities in Krasnaya Polyana and in the Imereti Valley. “As shows the experience of previous Olympic host cities, it is extremely important for the success of the Olympics to meet the construction schedule and take into account experience accumulated by the Olympic movement. I’m certain that effective cooperation with the IOC and the use of best international experience will allow Russia to hold unforgettable and technically perfect Olympic Games,” Chernyshenko noted. The Russian president’s Council on Physical Culture and Sport will meet in early October to discuss Sochi's Olympics-2014 preparations. President of the Russian Olympic Committee Leonid Tyagachyov said he would name the members of the Sochi-2014 Organizing Committee to the president shortly. "The Organizing Committee is the leading link in arranging and holding the Olympic Games, together with the IOC and winter sports federations," Tyagachyov stated at the State Duma on Tuesday.
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