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Saturday, May 21, 2022

Kopp leads bipartisan compromise on dome repairs


Republicans and Democrats haven’t agreed on much this session, but one area both parties see eye to eye is the need to repair and restore the Capitol’s iconic gold dome.

“The cast iron structure the gold dome sits on top of has deteriorated so badly that the state architect has put nets around it to catch falling chunks of debris,” said Sen. Mike Kopp, R-Littleton. “Spot treating problem areas won’t cut it anymore. We need to repair the structural deficiencies of the dome, and we needed to do it years ago.”

While Kopp believes public money should primarily be used to fix the people’s house, he was able to strike a compromise that would use a combination of historic preservation funds and private fundraising in order to repair the dome. Senate Bill 192 would transfer $12 million over three years to restore the structural deficiencies of the dome. In the second and third years, Kopp’s bill allows for private fundraising to be used prior to transferring money from the historic preservation fund. Kopp’s bill dove tails with a Democrat proposal that recently passed through the House and is headed to the Senate for consideration.

“I’m grateful to my Democrat colleagues for working with me on finding a solution that everyone can support,” Kopp said. “The alternatives of doing nothing or relying solely on the private sector money to bail us out are unacceptable. This is a good compromise.”

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