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Gay games controversy grows
But all sides say they don't want dispute to cost Cleveland the games

Vivian Goodman
Valarie McCall is among those saying the Gay Games will remain in Cleveland.
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In The Region:
The Federation of Gay Games says no matter the outcome of a lawsuit filed against it this week, the 2014 Gay Games will be in Cleveland. Cleveland Synergy Foundation is the local non-profit that wants to produce the games. They're expected to draw 10-thousand participants and be worth 30 to 60 million dollars to Northeast Ohio.

Yesterday, Synergy sued the international federation for revoking its license. Synergy is also suing the City of Cleveland saying it colluded with the federation to kill its deal. The suit specifically names Mayor Jackson's Government Affairs Director Valarie McCall. She told WKSU earlier this week that the City had concerns too, about Synergy's pace of fundraising and failure to document how it was spending funds the city allocated to the gay games effort. But she says there was no conspiracy.

Washington, D.C. and Boston both put in bids for the 2014 games, and are continuing to push for them, and hoping the legal controversy will give them an in. Richard Haber is the attorney for Cleveland Synergy Foundation, and says his group has worked too hard to get the games in Cleveland to watch them slip away.

Cleveland officials refused to be interviewed but Law Director Robert Triozzi issued a written statement that it will "aggressively defend against the lawsuit."

Kelly Stevens is spokesman for the Federation of Gay Games. He says a new local organization, including representatives of the gay community, needs to be in place by the end of the year, but the lawsuit won't change the fact that Cleveland will be the host city.

After the international federation revoked Cleveland Synergy Foundation's agreement, Synergy hired Cleveland attorney John Climaco. But he pulled out, citing a conflict of interest.

McCall, no boogeyman

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Synergy attorney on preserving the games

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Stevens: Commitment to Cleveland

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Related WKSU Stories

Legal threats heat up over Gay Games
Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Federation of Gay Games breaks with Synergy
Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Cleveland Councilman who led effort to get Gay Games suspects jilted cities have sour grapes
Thursday, July 22, 2010

Cleveland organizers of 2014 Gay Games are under scrutiny
Tuesday, July 20, 2010

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