By Pat Loeb

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Philadelphia city officials are apologizing to residents of Fairmount who were told by police Friday night to move their cars so a neighbor would have enough parking for a Christmas party.

Attorney Worrell Nero is the honorary consul general of St. Kitts and Nevis. He invited the country’s ambassador to his Christmas party and contacted the Commerce Department to say he needed parking.

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“Clearly this just got out of hand,” said the mayor’s spokesman Mark McDonald.

He says the fault lies in miscommunication between the commerce department, which requested a temporary no parking zone for the area around Nero’s office in the 800 block of N. 26th St., the streets department, which approved it, and the police who went door to door telling neighbors to move, only to find their spaces taken by Nero’s guests.

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Residents say the guests’ cars had police department parking placards on them. McDonald says he doesn’t know how they got them and he’s sorry.

“The city apologizes for what happened last Friday in Fairmount,” McDonald said.

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Reported by Pat Loeb, KYW Newsradio