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Olympic Panel Gives Away Leftovers

May 16, 2002

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) _ From computers to grains of sand, organizers are giving away the leftovers from the Winter Olympics.

The Salt Lake Organizing Committee met its goal of selling $20 million worth of surplus gear and already has handed out more than $4 million in beds, linens, appliances and office furniture to Utah universities and nonprofit groups.

On Monday, SLOC expects to announce who will get the rest of its stuff. One priority will be giving computer equipment to schools that were affected by the Olympics, such as Kearns High School, across the street from the speedskating oval.

``That should pretty much wipe us out,″ said Renee Rump, the organizing committee’s director of games revenue. That means emptying three warehouses in West Valley City and 2 1/2 truckloads of merchandise, including sand intended for snowy roads.

With a $56 million surplus anticipated in the $1.3 billion budget, SLOC announced last month that money also would be available for a new park somewhere in Salt Lake City as well as other monuments to the Winter Games.

SLOC’s payroll is down to 160 people, a number that will drop to 42 next month, and to zero by December, when the organizing committee is scheduled to go out of business for good.

The computers that organizers are donating to Utah schools are among the 1,000 left behind by Gateway, which provided 5,500 computers to the games. Gateway has its own school-giveaway program for the 4,500 computers it reclaimed.

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