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Olympic Ticket Lawsuit Settled -- May 23, 1997

ATLANTA - The Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games has settled a class action lawsuit by about 5,100 ticket buyers who said they were overcharged for tickets to the 1996 games. The lawsuit accused ACOG of scalping when it sold season tickets to an event. The season tickets combined cost more than tickets to each event bought one at a time. While the disparity was small for some events, season tickets for swimming cost $2,500, or $836 more than the cost of individual tickets to all swimming events, said Richard Finberg, a lawyer for the plaintiffs. The settlement requires ACOG to put $1.65 million in an account to be used for refunds. Finberg said refunds probably will be at least 70% of markup, if the amount is $50 or more. Those who paid markups under $50 will receive a commemorative medallion. Richard Stogner, ACOG's deputy chief financial officer, said ACOG settled the case because it is trying to wrap up its business. Under terms of the settlement, ACOG denies wrongdoing but acknowledges the markup.