ROME (AP).- Italian officials are seeking to raise some euro25 million (about $32 million) in private money to finance the restoration of one of the country's iconic landmarks: the Colosseum.
The Culture Ministry says the government will accept bids from possible sponsors from Aug. 4 to Sept. 15.
The ministry said in a statement that sponsors funding the project will be able to "promote their image," but that any ads will have to be compatible with the decorum of the 2,000-year-old arena.
Officials said Thursday the Rome city hall is also looking to charge tourists a few extra euros (dollars) in tax for hotels and some museums.
The tax, which goes into effect Jan. 1, will apply to other tourism services as well, such as double-decker tour buses, bars and restaurants set up along the bank of the Tiber river and tour boats, said Mauro Cutrufo, deputy mayor of Rome.
The tax is expected to bring an extra euro50 million into the city's public coffers, he said.
Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.