The Olympics

The Olympics


News, information and stories about the Olympic Games.

Wednesday, 23 November 2005

The £6BN Olympic Tax Bill

David James, a corporate troubleshooter, has warned that mismanagement of the 2012 London Olympic venues could cost the British taxpayer £6BN.

He notes that the lesson from the Millennium Dome fiasco need to be learned.

Not surprisingly James identifies the main culprit of overruns for the Dome, as that of being poor management.

James has produced a set of recommendations, to ensure that the 2012 Olympic Games do not fail financially. They include:
  • Involve Sport England in helping to ensure that local communities can use Olympic venues after the Games

  • Ensure that there is no long-term damage to local community facilities, such as the Hackney Marshes

  • Hire accountants to run the financial control and creation of contracts

  • Ensure that board directors of Olympic bodies have relevant experience — "not just a who's who of the great and the good"

  • Externally vet all sub-contractors hired to work on Olympic venues and ensure that they have a proven track record

  • Abandon the Government's standard procurement preference for the cheapest services, in favour of fitness for purpose

  • Agree standard contracts for all Games sponsors to prevent "freeloading"

  • Contract out the retailing of Olympics-themed merchandise to a professional national retailer

  • Set up and maintain a strictly controlled register of assets for all Olympic venues, detailing purchased and leased items

  • Retain health and safety experts to approve all designs for Games sports venues

  • Do not make advance payments to contractors

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