As some Iowa schools deep clean classrooms after staff and students test positive for Covid, one of the state’s largest public buildings already has been “fogged” four times since the pandemic began.

W. Charles Smithson, the secretary of the Iowa Senate, said the fogging sessions were done to “eradicate surface contamination” and were part of Covid safety protocols “that apparently were successful as no positive cases related to Capitol were reported.”

He confirmed disinfecting fog was deployed throughout the Capitol on March 26 and 27. This was after the legislature suspended its 2020 session and while the building was closed to the public. Disinfecting fog was deployed again on June 2, the day before the legislature resumed meeting in the Capitol. It was done in areas legislators and the public would be using. The process was repeated on Sunday, June 7 before legislators returned to the building for another week of work. The most recent fogging in the building happened on June 18, five days after the 2020 legislative session had concluded.

A spokeswoman for the executive branch agency that oversees state facilities referred Radio Iowa’s questions about deep cleaning of the Iowa Capitol to the legislative branch. Smithson said the bill for the disinfecting fog deployed three times in June was just over $4805.49  and the legislature is paying that bill. According to Smithson, the Iowa Department of Administrative Services ordered the disinfecting work done in the Capitol in March and he had no information on those executive branch contracts.

The Iowa Capitol is a massive building that is longer than a football field when measured from north to south and the top of its dome is 275 feet above the ground.