By Duncan Mackay
British Sports Internet Writer of the Year

July 22 - The average salary of staff at the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) was nearly £67,000 ($102,353) according to figures published today, which also revealed that that £56,000 ($86,000) was claimed by senior executives on expenses, including memory sticks, Christmas cards and flowers.

The ODA's 228 permanent staff also enjoyed an average bonus of £13,700 ($21,000) on top of their wages, the report reveals.

The ODA's total salary bill was £15.25 million ($23.29 million) plus "performance related pay" of £3.14 million ($4.79 million) for the year 2009/2010, making the average salary £66,885 ($102,176).

The higest paid employee at the ODA, as previously reported by insidethegames, is chief executive David Higgins who earns a basic salary of £394,999 ($603,000) - which rose to £438,000 ($669,000) after bonuses - and construction director Howard Shiplee who received a package of £377,000 ($576,000).

Nine ODA senior executives are paid more than the Prime Minister David Cameron, who earns £142,000 ($217,000) a year.

The report also shows that construction delivery partner CLM was paid £140 million ($214 million) by the ODA during the 12 months which included a performance bonus of £47 million ($72 million).

But the ODA report also revealed that its senior managers have agreed to a pay freeze this year and had also defered a proportion of bonuses eligible to directors until after the Games.

The details of expenses reveal that among the items claimed were memory sticks, Christmas cards and cups of coffee.

The biggest claimant was Shiplee (pictured) whose £15,055.65 ($22,999.77) including £5 ($8) for newspapers and £12.49 ($19.08) for Christmas cards.

He spent more than £10,000 ($15,000) on accomodation during the period.

Alison Nimmo, the director of design and regeneration, who earns £303,000 ($463,000)a year, claimed the least amount of expenses.

She billed for only £1,526 ($2,331) expenses, the majority of her claim being made up of membership fees to the RICS and the Royal Town Planning Institute.

Higgins claimed £23.10 ($35.28) for coffee at Costa on two separate occasions.

ODA chairman John Armitt, who works three-and-a-half days a week for the body earning £250,000 ($382,000), spent £116.25 ($177.58) on memory sticks and also claimed £40 ($61)  for flowers for a colleague on maternity leave.

Board member David Taylor had the highest public transport bill with £6,749.50 ($10,310.87).

The ODA also revealed that it had spent £3.5 billion ($5.3 billion) building the venues 2012 Games in the period up to March.

It said the cost of building work, which is now 55 per cent complete, was £822 million ($1.2 billion) below budget because of cost savings, unused contigency funds as well as deferred spend because of schedule changes.

Seven directors received an average annual bonus of £48,000 ($73,000) on top of salary and pension packages between £257,000 ($393,000) and £372,000 ($568,000).

The package earned by Godric Smith, the director of communications who was the former spin doctor to Prime Minister Tony Blair, was £257,000 ($393,000) - £10,000 ($15,000) more than he received last year.

To read the full ODA report click here.

Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]

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