July 22 - Financial reports have revealed that 144 staff members at the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) received more than £2.8 million ($4.3 million/€3.3 million) in redundancy payments for 2012-2013 after being contracted permanently, despite the organisation being due to shut down in 2014.
In particular, ODA chief executive Dennis Hone was paid £80,000 ($123,000/€93,000) in addition to a £373,000 ($576,000/€436,000) pension in March, while director of transport Hugh Sumner and director of venues and infrastructure Simon Wright received £73,000 ($112,000/€85,000) and £72,000 ($110,000/€84,000) respectively.
According to the ODA annual report Hone, now chief executive of the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC), was entitled to receive statutory redundancy pay and a terminal bonus equivalent to 60 per cent of his salary but no other exit payments.
"The Remuneration Committee decided to award a terminal bonus of 49 per cent of his salary and to defer 50 per cent of the bonus until the successful completion of the sale of East Village to the Qatari Diar and Delancey (QDD)," the report added.
An ODA spokesman commented: "London 2012 was a unique and challenging project and a great British success story and we needed to recruit and pay for the best talent from the private and public sectors, requiring people in many cases to give up secure long-term jobs elsewhere, with no certainty of the project's success or getting a job after the Games.
"The exit payments for staff other than our former chief executive, Dennis Hone, are limited to statutory redundancy pay, any leave they were unable to take before their employment ended, and, where appropriate, payment in lieu of notice.
"We had to adopt a flexible approach to managing staff contracts to ensure that key people, especially directors, remained with the project throughout periods critical to its success, until such time as the ODA could be certain that their skills and knowledge were no longer required.
"Our staff delivered this huge project on time and under budget - in fact making savings of over £1 billion ($1.5 billion/€1.17 billion) for the public purse.
"Like other staff, Dennis Hone received performance-related pay, but this was far from guaranteed and was measured against tough performance criteria, evaluated personally and in relation to the organisation he successfully led in the critical 18 months up to the Games, during London 2012 and immediately after.
"Pension payments made in relation to Dennis Hone were legal and contractual obligations under the scheme of which he was a member throughout his employment at the ODA."
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November 2012: Hone appointed permanent chief executive of London Legacy Development Corporation
October 2012: London 2012 set to come in nearly £400 million under budget
September 2012: Olympic Delivery Authority chief executive revealed as highest earning Government official
June 2012: London 2012 on track to be delivered £476 million under budget
February 2012: London 2012 set to come in £500 million under budget