Last week, the Los Angeles City Council was presented with a 2023-24 budget proposal for the multi-million-dollar youth sports program that operates using funds advanced to LA 2028 Olympic organizers by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
The youth sports program, which began in 2020 and is overseen by LA’s Department of Recreation and Parks, will see an increase of $0.9 million next fiscal year for a total of $18.465 million if approved.
“The YSP [youth sports program] supports youth participation in sport by providing financial subsidies to limit the cost of participation to not more than $10 per participant in YSP activities for all youth at prequalified City recreation centers and for all eligible youth at non-prequalified City recreation centers,” the 2023-24 project plan said.
More than $1 million is earmarked for the USA Swim Team, an increase of $270,210 compared to last fiscal year. The proposal noted that the added funds would be offset by decreased funding for Aquatics ($181,249 less than last year) as well as the elimination of the signature sport Tae Kwon Do ($192,560) as an offering at all recreation centers. Swimming is the largest sport in terms of spending by a wide margin.
A big chunk of the budget increase is being allocated toward adaptive sports programs. Funding for adaptive sports is expected to nearly double next fiscal year with an extra $363,775 going toward those programs. Adaptive swimming is set to receive more than twice as much money (from $26,024 to $59,371). Two new sports, adaptive archery and wheelchair tennis, are being added ($134,356).
The U.S. Center for SafeSport budget is slated for $250,000 next fiscal year, down from $500,000 last year.
The other big additions next fiscal year are funding for kayaking ($214,705) and Teqball ($209,000) as signature sports. Teqball was funded as a pilot program last year. New pilot sports next year include archery, karate, climbing, triathlon, and fencing, which add up to an additional $189,794 compared to last year’s pilot programs.
The 2023-24 budget also proposes an extra $152,430 for recreational leagues and classes. The proposal will be reviewed by the City Council’s Ad Hoc Committee on the 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games before the council votes on it.
Rare LA win.
Yeah, and LA County just lost water polo to Irvine. Anaheim has the indoor volleyball.
There’s a huge chunk of money in the sports foundation from the ’84 Games still available too. It would be great to see an article of how much of that is going to swimming. You can request these grants and they can be sizeable. The ’84 Games produced such a huge surplus, that kids all over LA in multiple sports have benefited. It should be the organizing committee’s goal to make that happen again if possible. For those of you that remember “Festive Federalism” and the colorful uniforms of the volunteers, you’ll remember the impact that we had for decades.
More funding into swimming is nice to see.