Mayor Vincent Gray is seeking $15 million in emergency funding for restoration of Washington National Cathedral from the Federal Emergency Management Agency after touring the earthquake-damaged landmark.
Gray called the now-closed cathedral an "iconic monument" during a tour Thursday, noting it receives more than half a million visitors a year.
The cathedral and the Washington Monument sustained significant damage in the 5.8-magnitude quake that shook the nation's capital and much of the East Coast on Aug. 23. Stonework fell off the cathedral's towers, and other areas were severely cracked.
Initial repairs are expected to cost at least $15 million before the cathedral's scheduled reopening Nov. 12.
The Interfaith Alliance said in a statement Thursday that the government should not use taxpayer money to build, repair or maintain religious institutions.