Building Project Costs Labeled ‘Eye-Popping’

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The space is described as gorgeous, but the cost "eye-popping." Vermont lawmakers are applying those terms to office space at the National Life building in Montpelier that has been renovated to house the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources and other state agencies.

Members of the House Institutions Committee say they were given a rough estimate last year that the project to move the Natural Resources Agency into the building that already housed the transportation and commerce agencies would cost around $2 million. The more recent estimate? $8.65 million, and that’s not final.

Administration Secretary Jeb Spaulding defends the expense, saying it’s the best deal the state could get.

Now members of the House Institutions Committee are looking at ways to avoid similar surprises in the future.

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