THis Forum debated hotly the pros and cons of getting the Olympics in London. I was definitely a detractor. Now that (Surprise! - I think not) the costs are creeping towards more than double the projections, I'm even MORE depressed. What does everyone think?
I think that it is a complete joke that Londoners have to pay for the Olympics via an addition to their already ridiculously inflated council tax.
Londoners support the rest of the UK and the revenue generated through tax and economic activity in London subsidises the likes of the Scots to have better healthcare, free nursing home places etc. that are not available to Londoners.
It is unfair that money generated in London has to leave the city to support other areas and yet other areas of the UK would be up in arms if they had to contribute a couple of quid a year to an event that although will be held in London is supposed to benefit the whole country. It is typical political double standards.
Anyway, this country continually fails to deliver on major projects not because there is not the ability to successfully project manage events but rather because jumped up politicians feel the need to meddle in things they know nothing about.
Just because a net curtain twitching incompetent gets elected to governement they suddenly believe that they have the skills to deliver major projects. Yet before they were elected no-one would trust them to deliver letters nevermind a global event. These projects should be free from any political interference as politicians haven't got the first clue about what they are doing. Politicians in this country have absolutely no experience of achieving anything except spending vast sums of our money on their pet projects and if they overspend there is always a simple remedy...take more of our money through taxes...great.
Sadly, Jan I think we wil pay a disproportionate share of the costs.
I find it odd that eopple outside London will benefit but not feel any of the pain.
But also, my friends in teaching and medicine say that London's servies are feeling the pain of catering for the new arrivals. Despite having a mayor with some power I feel that we are not supported to the same levels as our friends in Scotland-or Northern Ireland......
This isn't another round of Ken bashing but he is far too concerned with promoting his green credentials and class war on anyone who drives an expensive car. Scotland, Wales and N.I have devolution...what about London? Ken should be fighting London's corner not trying to save the planet by turning off some lights in his office for a couple of hours as a gimmick.
A devolved London would be fantastic. If the money that was raised in London via taxes actually stayed in London then there would be a marked increase in the quality of life. The roads and pavements might actually be clean, parks could be monitored and children may actually have some recreation space that doesn't involve playing a game of dodge the needle.
Anyway, I'm getting carried away...Londoners pay more money for less services in a worse environment so that the regions can benefit simply because most people are not going to leave the city to go and live in the subsidised hinterlands. The politicians know this and they exploit it.
The Olympics are simply an extension of this. As we are paying for the majority of the cost of the Olympics does it mean that we get first call on the tickets...do we, as taxpayers in London, get given a voucher that is redeemable against seats for the 100m final...no, didn't think so.
We wont get first call on tickets or subsidised seats but we will get to have the Olympics on our doorsteps and benefit from the legacy facilities and transport improvements though. I think that is why we are (fairly) paying a share of the costs. From memory the council tax payers of London will be hit for about a quarter of the infrastructure costs (I seem to remember £20 per year for a band D property but that could be wrong). Of course no-one seems to have considered cost over-runs so there doesn't seem to be a fall back for what happens then.
But as we live in South London will our children get the benefit of the facilities ? people in Essex are better placed than most of south and west London to use the new facilities and much of the improved transport facilities will benefit commuters from out of London and yet they will not pay anything towards it.