Italy’s church faces tax bill in the millions

ROME — Italy’s Catholic Church says it will open talks with the government to respond to a European Court of Justice ruling that says Italy has the right to recover millions of euros in property taxes.

The Luxembourg-based court on Nov. 6 overturned a 2012 decision by the European Commission that said it would be impossible to recover tax revenue that non-profits including the Italian church were exempted from paying for certain properties.

A Montessori school and the owner of a bed and breakfast had argued that the tax breaks the church received for money-making properties offering similar educational and hostel-like services were unfair.