Everybody running for governor says the state is spending too much on the restoration of the Capitol. But who’s to blame? State Sen. Kirk Dillard (R-Hinsdale), a Republican candidate for governor, says the auditor general can shed some light. “There’s a lot of finger-pointing going on, and people are making bombastic snap judgments. I understand how the public ought to be furious. But we need to make sure these investments in the state’s Capitol building that will last for many, many decades were prudent and that a competitive bid was really a competitive bid,” he said.
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Dillard is sponsoring a resolution asking for an audit, which he hopes will be undertaken and completed by the end of the year. At issue are some of the line items in the $50 million renovation and historic restoration of the West Wing of the Capitol: $667,000 spent on copper-plated doors, and $500,000 on chandeliers and sculptures. So far, the architect of the Capitol has taken the heat. Dillard says lawmakers approved the overall project but did not see the details. The governor has withdrawn funding for the restoration once the current phase is complete.