DENVER — Construction crews are returning to work at the veterans hospital outside Denver after a last-minute deal with congressional leaders avoided a shutdown of the half-finished project.
But the really heavy lifting will be done 1,500 miles away in Washington.
The U.S. House agreed Thursday to raise the project's spending cap by $100 million, enough to continue work for three weeks. The Senate is expected to act Friday.
Congress and the Veterans Affairs Department still have to find up to $830 million to finish the vastly over-budget hospital and possibly scale it back.
The VA also must persuade skeptical lawmakers that it's serious about punishing those responsible for the problems and making internal changes to avoid a repeat.
The hospital is expected to cost $1.73 billion, almost three times the amount the VA estimated last year.