5:00am

Mon June 3, 2013
Politics

With Final Colorado Dome Payment, More Preservation Grants Now Available

The State Historical Fund says it will once again be able to offer a second round of historic preservation grants -- the first time it’s been able to do so in three years.

Why?

You can thank state lawmakers for that.

Typically, two rounds of grants are conducted each year – one in April and the other in October. For the past three years state legislation forced funds typically allocated for the second round of grants to instead go to the Colorado State Capitol dome restoration project.

Steve Turner, director of the State Historical Fund says because state lawmakers allocated $5 million in General Funds this year toward the final payment to restore the Capitol dome, a second round of grants can once again be provided.

“We’re very excited about that. Not only is it good to distribute the money broadly across the state, but in some of the mountain communities where they have very short construction time frames, an October grant round just works out better for them, then the early April grant round,” said Turner.

Around $9 million dollars will be distributed this year, with grants ranging in size up to $200,000.

Turner says the State Historical Fund has played a large role in giving the State Capitol’s dome and its cast iron enclosure a major makeover for the first time in more than 100 years.

The most anticipated part of the restoration project has been the replacement of the gold leaf covering the copper dome. “The gold you see up there, and the copper underneath it especially has come to the end of its life and needed to be replaced,” said Turner.

Turner says the project should be completed by summer 2014. When the white tarp currently wrapping the Capitol dome is removed, “we should be looking at an absolutely beautiful shiny, historically new but very accurately restored dome,” he said.

Application drafts for the second round of State Historical Fund grants must be submitted by September 1, 2013, in order to be reviewed by a State Historical Fund staff member. Information on applying for a grant can be found here.