The UK's Bill For Olympic Schmoozing? $1.26 Million


Photo: Kenichi Nobusue, Flickr

LONDON (AP) — A top British official says the government has spent 750,000 pounds ($1.26 million) on tickets to entertain dignitaries and business leaders at next summer’s Olympic games in London.Jonathan Stephens, the most senior civil servant in Britain’s department of culture, media and sport, told lawmakers Wednesday that offering possible investors or business leaders a free seat would help “secure maximum benefit for Britain” from the 2012 games.

Lawmaker Margaret Hodge, however, said many members of the public can’t afford Olympic tickets and would be appalled by the government’s outlay.

Britain’s government is making sharp public spending cuts, which will amount to about 104 billion pounds ($160 billion) by 2016.

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