Yokohama city has included JPY400 million (US$3.7 million) in its initial budget for the 2020 fiscal year for promotion costs for an IR bid, with Mayor Fumiko Hayashi stating this week she is not considering reducing this budget.
At a regular assembly of the city council on Tuesday, Shoji Oyama of the Constitution and People’s Forum (Rikken/Kokumin Forum) asked, “[the bid promotion work] is low priority and non-essential with the current severe impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Why wasn’t the entire [JPY400 million], or even part of it, reallocated toward combating COVID-19? Was it even considered?”
In response, the mayor explained, “IR is a national project. We have received congressional vote to promote the project.”
Hayashi added that because the government has not changed the schedule for IR bids, “It is necessary to proceed with efforts [as a city]. We are also making public relations efforts with residents.”