Federal agencies asked to allow telework during Pope's visit

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WASHINGTON (AP) — The Office of Personnel Management is calling on federal agencies to allow teleworking during the pope's visit to Washington to cut down on traffic.

The federal government in the Washington region will remain open during Pope Francis' three-day visit, but road closures and crowds will mean disruptions to the usual commute.

In a memo sent Tuesday, OPM Acting Director Beth Cobert asks agencies to let employees telecommute to avoid adding to the congestion and reduce distractions for security officials. If employees must come in, Cobert recommends that they plan on extra travel time.

Pope Francis is set to arrive in Washington on Sept. 22. His itinerary includes visits to religious sites, the White House and the Capitol, where he will address Congress. The pope leaves for New York on Sept. 24.

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