By Daniel Etchells

The latest poll on the Boston 2024 bid revealed a decline in support ©Getty ImagesBoston 2024 chief executive Rich Davey has moved to quell speculation that the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) intends to drop the city's bid to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games if local support does not improve soon. 

USOC chief executive Scott Blackmun has revealed independent polling will be conducted in the next few months to monitor public backing, claiming "local support is critical to the success of any bid".

The latest poll on Boston's bid revealed that 52 per cent of the 504 Boston area voters surveyed were against the bid, with 36 per cent in favour.

The Wall Street Journal claims that people familiar with the USOC's thinking have said the organisation is unlikely to move forward with the plan if residents continue to reject it.

But Davey claimed Boston 2024 "has enjoyed the unequivocal support" of USOC since being announced as the US' candidate city in January.

"Boston 2024 and the USOC will conduct polls from time to time during this bid process to ensure we are on track to win a majority support," said Davey.

"In fact the IOC (International Olympic Committee) requires it.

"We welcome this initiative and we are confident that all polling over the coming months will reveal a significant increase in public support as we continue to inform and engage the people of Boston and Massachusetts about the long-term and sustainable benefits of the Games."

Scott Blackmun, chief executive of the United States Olympic Committee, claims "local support is critical to the success of any bid" ©Getty ImagesScott Blackmun, chief executive of the United States Olympic Committee, claims "local support is critical to the success of any bid" ©Getty Images

Blackmun has also moved to quash the speculation, stating any suggestion the USOC is considering alternatives is "simply not true".

He added: "We believe that Boston can and should lead America's bid to host the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games, and we are absolutely committed to our partnership with Boston 2024 and their innovative concept for hosting the Games." 

Olympic officials held talks as recently as last week with Los Angeles and San Francisco about the feasibility of reviving bids from those cities if the USOC abandons Boston, according to two Wall Street Journal sources said to be close to the discussions.

But another source reported to be familiar with the USOC's plans said it is more likely the US would withdraw from the race entirely than try to resurrect a bid from another city.

Last week, it was announced that Boston 2024 will seek a statewide referendum on whether the city should bid for the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Bid chairman John Fish said the organisation will gather the signatures required to get the measure on the statewide ballot in November 2016, and also pledged that Boston 2024 would not go forward with its bid if the measure does not pass, or if a majority of voters in the city of Boston do not support it.

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