Monarchy cost British taxpayers US$85.2 million last year
In this file photo dated Thursday March 8, 2018, Britain's Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle arrive for an event for young women, as part of International Women's Day in Birmingham, central England. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Rui Vieira, FILE
The Associated Press
Published Monday, June 24, 2019 7:25PM EDT
LONDON -- Buckingham Palace says the monarchy cost British taxpayers US$85.2 million during 2018-19, a 41% increase on the previous financial year.
The number rose primarily because of higher levels of spending devoted to critical renovations for Buckingham Palace in London. The iconic structure is in the second year of a 10-year project after a Treasury report concluded the building's infrastructure was in danger of a catastrophic failure.
The total Sovereign Grant, which funds Queen Elizabeth II and her household's official expenses, was 82.2 million pounds, or 1.24 pounds per person in the U.K. That figure includes 15.2 million pounds ($19.3 million) set aside for future phases of the palace renovation.
The palace says the royal family took on 3,200 official engagements during 2018-19 and welcomed 160,000 guests to royal palaces and events.