The city of Pittsburgh is trying to bill the Thomas Merton Center a whopping $6,346.44 for security used during a Sept. 25 G-20 march.
Melissa Minnich, communications director for the TMC, says the bill arrived Jan. 15, billing the long-time activist group for the cost of policing a permitted march that went from Oakland through Downtown and the North Side.Wait, it gets better:
No arrests were made during the march, which took place along a route that was tightly controlled by police -- to the point that, on some Downtown streets especially, it resembled nothing so much as a cattle run. And for the Merton Center -- which had to file a lawsuit against the city to have the march in the first place -- the bill is insult to injury. Activists were highly critical of heavy-handed security tactics ... the very tactics they are now being charged for. [emphasis added.]
Now I'm wondering if a one-time retroactive "user fee" is going to be tacked onto the tuition bills that Pitt and CMU will be sending out - to pay for all that tear gas, you know. It doesn't grow on trees, you know.