Italy City council to pocket Trevi Fountain coins
Throw a coin over your shoulder into Rome’s Trevi Fountain, the legend says, and it will bring you good fortune and you will one day return to the Eternal City. It is an essential tradition for millions of tourists. But few will have suspected their loose change would also lead to a row between Rome’s secular authorities and the Catholic Church. The €1.5 million (NZ$2.5m) of coins scooped out of the fountain each year used to go to Catholic charity Caritas. Now Virginia Raggi, Rome’s mayor, says the coins belong to her administration. Avvenire, the daily paper produced by the Italian Bishops’ Conference, launched an attack on the council in its Saturday edition, describing the city’s bureaucracy as ‘‘the enemy of the poor’’.