The Olympics

The Olympics


News, information and stories about the Olympic Games.

Thursday, 16 November 2006

London Olympics Bill Soars

As predicted on this site, the bill for the London 2012 Olympics is already way out of control.

The bill is now expect to be above £5BN, the original budget of £3.4BN has been thrown away.

Many excuses have been given for this appalling lack of cost control, and poor budgeting; extra security costs, an unforeseen VAT bill and private Treasury predictions of enormous cost overruns.

However, the overriding reason is clear; never, ever trust politicians to prepare accurate budgets or control costs. They are incapable, especially when the costs and budgets relate to an ego boosting extravaganza such as the Olympics.

Ken Livingstone, Mayor of London, claims that council taxpayers in London should not have to contribute more than the £625M already pledged. He would say that, and it should be remembered that he promised faithfully not to increase the congestion charge; a promise he promptly reneged on, once he was re-elected to office.

The lesson?

Don't trust politicians.

A new Olympics cost estimate is being worked out between Olympic project managers, the Treasury and the Department of Culture, Media and Sport. Needless to say this will be reviewed in the fullness of time as well.

The Chancellor's officials are so scared about the prospect of further budgetary disaster, that they are insisting on a contingency fund of 60% of the estimated £1BN building costs.

Hugh Robertson, the Tory spokesman, said:

"This is a story of monumental incompetence."

Jack Lemley, the American engineer who quit as chairman of the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA), raised the alarm the other week when he cited political interference and cost overruns as the reason for his unexpected departure.

As expected, this will be a shambles.

Sensible countries should do all they can to avoid hosting the Olympics, they are nothing but trouble and a waste time and money.

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