“London City Hall” by Garry Knight – Flickr. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:London_City_Hall.jpg#/media/File:London_City_Hall.jpg
Press release from the London Assembly:
Thousands of pounds of taxpayers’ money have been spent keeping details of the West Ham deal out of the public domain, the London Assembly uncovered today.
Giving evidence to the Budget and Performance Committee, David Edmonds of the London Legacy Development Corporation confirmed that:
The LLDC has spent £4,000 to date on legal fees in its bid to keep the Olympic Stadium deal with West Ham confidential, after the Information Commissioner ordered it should be made public.
It estimates these costs are expected to rise this month to £17,000, and even more if it becomes necessary to ‘appeal the Tribunal decision.’
The final bill for transforming the Olympic Stadium might top the previous estimate of £272 million, as the LLDC negotiates the cost of further work.
The revelation came during the London Assembly’s annual scrutiny of the Mayor’s draft Budget.
The Mayor himself will be questioned on the Budget, and the legacy he is leaving for his successor, on 12 January 2016.
Stephen Knight AM, Deputy Chair of the Budget and Performance Committee, said:
“In times when public bodies are facing unprecedented budget cuts, it is more important than ever that public money is spent meeting the needs of the public.
It is therefore astonishing that the Mayor’s London Legacy Development Corporation is spending thousands of pounds of public money on lawyers to keep the details of the deal with West Ham secret. The Information Commissioner has looked at the arguments and ordered the LLDC to publish the deal in full – and the LLDC should clearly now do so.
Having funded this stadium, Londoners have a right to know about how their money is being spent through this deal.”