GOP Led Push for Pricier Furnishings in Remodeled Capitol
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - In restoring Minnesota's Capitol to its old glory, renovators planned to spend $4.5 million on furniture and decorative finishing touches on the inside.
That was until House Republicans quietly pushed to bump up the furnishings allocation by $2 million, or 45 percent.
The extra money is to accommodate historically compatible furniture in more spaces, higher-end upholstery, refinished hardwood flooring rather than carpet in leadership offices and a $10,000 door on one Capitol suite.
House Speaker Kurt Daudt says furniture quality in initial plans was "subpar" and other fixes were aimed at restoring the building's 1905-era feel.
The amount is small when weighed against the $300 million-plus cost for the total restoration. But Democrats see hypocrisy because the GOP criticized them in the 2014 campaign for excessive office spending.