DENVER (CBS4) – The campaign to save the Capitol dome got under way on Wednesday. The problem for the state is a $1 billion shortfall. That means there isn’t any money to save the dome.
Colorado is now turning to a public campaign to finance repairs.
The dome is literally crumbling and the repairs won’t be cheap. The total price tag for repair is $12 million. The bulk of that money needs to come from donations.
The state is hoping to bring in $8 million from public donations. The other $4 million will come from the State Historical Fund.
The cast iron dome is badly rusted and pieces of it have fallen off over the last few years.
The issue has never been whether the dome needs to be fixed but rather how the state will pay for the job.
Last year lawmakers settled on a public-private partnership with the private sector picking up two-thirds of the tab.
No matter what, the state is on the hook for the whole $12 million.
If the campaign fails, lawmakers will be forced to dip into the historical fund again. Organizers of the fundraiser said that would mean rural communities would lose grant money they rely upon for a variety of projects.
Former Sen. Hank Brown is leading the campaign which has been given the name, Share in the Care Colorado
“This was always a place of great pride and it was a reflection of our self image. It was a reflection of not what we are, but what we hope to be,” said Brown.
Organizers are also making it easy for people to donate. Residents can make $5 donations by texting “dome” to 50555. The charge will show up on the customer’s next phone bill.