Aussie Olympic Officials Award Themselves Generously

By Michael McGuire

SYDNEY, May 2. AUSTRALIA's top Olympic chiefs all received hefty pay raises last year, rewarding themselves for their part in helping Sydney stage what were described as the "best ever" Olympic Games.

AOC president John Coates led the way, pocketing $421,539 last year, an increase of more than 12 per cent on 1999. Since 1998, Coates's salary has risen by
almost $100,000.

But AOC secretary-general Craig McLatchey is catching up fast, his salary rising an impressive 23.4 per cent to $352,719.

Other AOC executives to do well include marketing man PeterCracknell, whose package increased by $91,672 to
$317,429, while athlete director Herb Elliott received $244,035, an increase of $21,673 on 1999.

The salary packages were revealed in the AOC's annual
report, which has been published ahead of the body's annual meeting this weekend. The report also revealed that until December 31 last year, Coates and AOC members Kevan Gosper, John Devitt and Geoffrey Henke
all received the use of a car as part of a sponsorship
arrangement.

But missing out on the Olympic glory – and spoils – was
Phil Coles, who was forced to step aside after being embroiled in the controversy surrounding alleged corruption in the awarding of the 2002 Winter Games to Salt Lake City.

The report lists Coles's 1999 income as $230,222. In 2000, Coles received $252 in "other annual benefits."

The report also shows the AOC to be in a strong financial position as a result of the Sydney Olympics.
The AOC made an operating surplus of $90.2 million in 2000, mainly from television rights sales.

In the previous four-year period, the AOC recorded a
combined surplus of $94.8m.
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