• Super Bowl 53 ended up costing Atlanta way less than expected

    By: Aaron Diamant

    Updated:

    ATLANTA - The City of Atlanta stayed under its Super Bowl 53 budget by 14 percent, according to documents obtained by Channel 2 Investigative Reporter Aaron Diamant.

    According to Atlanta City Auditor Amanda Noble, by saving more than $1.5 million, taxpayers saved.

    "It speaks well to the leadership and the communication throughout the process," Noble said.

    The report shows Noble's team budgeted about $11.9 million for Super Bowl-related expenses. They only spent about $10.3 million.

    "If you had told me before that it was going to end up $1.7 million under what they budgeted, I would have said you were crazy," said William Perry, with Georgia Ethics Watchdogs.

    Perry, who's been critical of city spending in the past, said officials deserve a pat on the back for this one.


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    The audit found the city spent about one-third less on goods and services than it figured it would. However, overtime costs for police and public works went over budget.

    "Security is a No. 1 issue, so I'm never going to fight overtime pay for police officers at a major event, considering the things that have happened here in the city of Atlanta," Perry said.

    Noble said they did figure out the city's mechanism to track costs in real time failed.

    "It's a problem because it's just harder to track and control costs," Noble said.

    Overall, it was a good report, according to Noble.

    "I think we can celebrate the good news," Noble said.

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