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The cost of Unite the Right activity: $2.6M, D.C. estimate says

The figure is early and could grow, officials say

A scene from the Aug. 12 demonstrations in downtown D.C.
Yasin Ozturk/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

This past weekend’s Unite the Right rally and associated counterprotests racked up a bill of at least $2.6 million in security measures for the District, according to numbers released by D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser’s office.

That cost is preliminary and could grow after any additional expenses related to the events are accounted for. The vast majority of the expenditures paid for D.C. police staffing, largely because the Metropolitan Police Department was operating with “all hands on deck.” Other costs came from the work of D.C.’s fire, homeland security, and public works departments.

As for most major events in the nation’s capital that involve significant security resources, the District is seeking to have the costs of the Aug. 12 rally and other free-speech activity reimbursed by the federal government, which has a special fund for such events. Last fiscal year, D.C. was reimbursed $9.1 million from that fund, the Washington Post reports.

Per numerous media reports, only about two dozen white nationalists marched to Lafayette Park—located directly across from the White House—to mark the one-year anniversary of a rally in Charlottesville, Virginia that turned deadly. They were outnumbered by thousands of counterprotesters and no one was reportedly injured.

The demonstrations led authorities to close several square blocks near the White House to traffic for almost all of Sunday.