Philadelphia to absorb $8M in costs from papal visit

PHILADELPHIA (AP) – The city of Philadelphia is going to absorb nearly half of the costs of hosting Pope Francis for two days in September, or about $8 million.

In the months leading up to the visit, city and church officials had said that the Vatican-sponsored World Meeting of Families would cover all the city’s costs.

But Mayor Michael Nutter now tells The Philadelphia Inquirer (http://bit.ly/1Sz87x9 ) that “all costs” referred only to money spent on the weekend the pope was actually in Philadelphia.

He says that didn’t include preparations for the visit or the cleanup afterward.

Church officials say the arrangement was in line with agreements the city has struck with other organizations for large-scale events.

The city controller says the amount billed the World Meeting of Families is far below expectations.

Nutter says the expenses were well worth it.

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