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House Pledges Up To $250 Million To Cover Chicago Olympics Losses

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) -- The Illinois House has voted to pledge up to $250 million to Chicago for any potential losses it may incur if the city hosts the 2016 Olympic Games.

Supporters of the state-backed insurance program say it is a must for Chicago to secure the games. The Illinois Senate is expected to take up the bill next week.

Democratic Rep. William Burns of Chicago said Thursday the insurance is a low-risk deal for the state, adding the Olympics could have $22 billion economic impact for Illinois. Burns pointed out that the last three Summer Olympics in North America have averaged a $733 million surplus.

Members of an International Olympic Committee team arrive next month to scrutinize Chicago's suitability to host the 2016 Games.

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Information from: The Pantagraph, http://www.pantagraph.com