Your NPR news source

Chicago offers first detailed glimpse of NATO costs

Chicago is turning in its first round of receipts for federal reimbursement, most of which comes from police overtime.

SHARE Chicago offers first detailed glimpse of NATO costs

Chicagoans got their first glimpse at the detailed costs of last month’s NATO summit on Friday, when the city asked for more than $15 million worth of reimbursements from the federal government, most of which stems from police overtime.

The city made $15.6 million worth of federal reimbursement grant requests Friday, according to Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s office. The vast majority of that cost - $14.6 million - was racked up for Chicago Police Department overtime. The department had officers working 12-hour shifts over NATO weekend in order to have enough cops to wrangle downtown protests, while still policing the rest of the city.

The city is also asking for nearly $960,000 for Chicago Fire Department training and overtime.

Friday’s NATO reimbursement requests are just the first to come from the city, with the rest coming over the next month, said Emanuel spokeswoman Sarah Hamilton.

Meanwhile, the host committee that organized the event took in $32.9 million in corporate donations to help pay for NATO, according to a report also released Friday by World Business Chicago, the committee’s parent group.

Organizers received another $2.7 million in in-kind donations, ranging from $600,000 in UPS shipping, to 2,400 bottles of Goose Island beer and 1,063 discounted Lou Malnati’s pizzas.

Before Friday’s disclosures, organizers and city officials declined to detail cost estimates leading up to the summit.

The host committe had originally said NATO would cost the city about $39 million in up-front costs, to be paid back after the fact.

That estimate turned out to be about right, said Hamilton. The host committee will use most of its remaining $19.6 million in donations to pay the city back, while the balance will come from federal grants, she said.

“As we have said, taxpayers will not be responsible for NATO costs,” Hamilton said in an email. "[T]hey will be entirely borne by federal reimbursement and NATO host committee, which was funded through private donations.”

The Latest