Pastor Terry Jones will be expected to pay the city for the costs of security in preparation for his controversial Quran burning ceremony. Gainesville, Florida plans to bill the pastor and church to the tune of more than $180,000, according to a spokeswoman for the police.
Though the September 11th ceremony was cancelled after world leaders pressured Jones to rethink his plans, the city was left to foot the bill for the extra security. Police worked for over a month to provide for the safety of the community that lies around the Dove World Outreach Center, where the burning was planned.
The weekend cost the Gainesville Police Department more than $100,000, and the Alachua County Sheriff around $80,000.
Cpl. Tscharna Senn, spokeswoman for the police, said that virtually all of the 286 officers employed by the city were on duty over the weekend to protect both the church and other potential targets.
Jones stated that had the church known there was a bill forthcoming, it would have declined the added security.
While some have said the city was over prepared for the event, Senn said that if there had been a disaster as a result of the ceremony, those same people would say that authorities were not properly prepared.
The proposed burning made worldwide news and sparked demonstrations around the world by Muslims.