The Guardian in the UK is reporting: (If any can actually find an American newspaper mentioning this, let us know...ahem.)
President Barack Obama's inauguration next week is set to be the most expensive ever, predicted to reach over $150m (£102m). This dwarfs the $42.3m spent on George Bush's inauguration in 2005 and the $33m spent on Bill Clinton's in 1993.
Part of the spending includes emergency funding announced by the White House on Tuesday to help with the soaring costs. Most of this new federal funding will be to deal with the huge influx of people, estimated 1.5 million to 2 million.
A White House statement said that President Bush "declared an emergency exists in the District of Columbia".
If there is snow, the costs will grow higher. The long-term forecast suggests there is a chance of snow on Sunday and again on the day of inauguration, on Tuesday.
Carole Florman, spokeswoman for the joint congressional committee on inaugural ceremonies, told the New York Daily News, which estimated the cost at $160m: "We're always very budget conscious. But we're sending a message to the entire world about our peaceful transition of power, and you don't want it to look like a schlock affair. It needs to be appropriate to the magnitude of events that it is."
Florman deals specifically with the inauguration ceremony at the Congress, which is relatively modest. The surge in spending is partly because of the Obama's decision to open the entire Mall to the public.
The federal government has budgeted $49m for the inauguration. But this does not take account of other demands, such as from Virginia and Maryland, the states surrounding the capital, that have also asked for emergency funding. In addition, funding will come from Obama's own fund-raising efforts and from private contributors.
One of the biggest costs is transport, and the Washington DC transport authority has also put in a request to the federal government for extra funding.
Obama today issued a statement calling on people across the nation to participate by holding their own neighbourhood events, including their own balls. He acknowledged the logistical problems that will face Washington.
"Now, you've probably heard the reports that unprecedented numbers of Americans are planning to join us in Washington. That will mean long lines, a tough time getting around, and most of all, a lot of walking on what could be a very cold winter day," Obama said.
The presidential inaugural committee today published details of the inauguration and the days running up to it.
On Sunday, there will be a free concert opened by Obama at the Lincoln Memorial, with songs from Bruce Springsteen, Beyoncé and others and historical readings by actors including Jamie Foxx and Denzel Washington.
On Monday night, there will be a children's inaugural event in Washington. On Tuesday, there will be the inauguration, parade led by the Obamas from Congress to the White House and a series of balls in the evening.
The inauguration events will end on Wednesday with a prayer service at the Washington National Cathedral.
Remember when they killed Bush for spending $40 Million? (Via Drudge)
Obama just loves to spend tax-payer money, huh?