New stadium plan hits turbulence, but passes first House panel

  • Article by: BAIRD HELGESON and MIKE , KASZUBA
  • Updated: April 3, 2012 - 12:18 AM

House panel OK'd proposal despite criticism of funding backstops.

hide

One of three new conceptual images from the Minnesota Vikings shows possibilities for a stadium and its surroundings on the Metrodome site in downtown Minneapolis.

Photo: , Minnesota Vikings

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

A new financing plan for a Minnesota Vikings stadium ran into immediate trouble Monday at the state Capitol, but had enough momentum to pass its first test in the House.

Hours after Gov. Mark Dayton and the chief Senate author of the legislation criticized a key ingredient of the new proposal, a House panel adopted the plan and sent it on its wobbly way.

The plan to fund the nearly $1 billion stadium could get more hearings in both the House and Senate this week before the Legislature begins a 10-day spring break. No Senate panel has yet approved the plan and any stadium deal likely faces choppy political seas as stadium supporters race against GOP hopes to adjourn the Legislature by month's end.

The proposal presented Sunday by Republicans in the House would create funding backstops for the state's share of stadium costs. It quickly drew criticism from several corners, and Dayton said a provision to also allow so-called tip board betting on professional sports games would violate federal laws against sports betting.

"It doesn't strike me at first glance as a viable option," the governor said.

"Do you think the governor's assessment is not entirely accurate?" Rep. Sheldon Johnson, DFL-St. Paul, asked at the hearing.

King Wilson, the executive director of Allied Charities of Minnesota, an umbrella group for the charities, said he felt certain that tip boards would be deemed legal and were different from outright sports bookmaking. A tip board, he said, is simply a numerical game that is not based on which team wins a particular game. "It does not matter who wins or loses," said Wilson.

The charities estimate that the new games would bring in $16 million a year.

But an analyst for the House panel told the committee he was unsure the provision could survive a court challenge. And earlier in the day, Tom Barrett, executive director of Minnesota Gambling Control Board, said New Jersey is trying to challenge the ban, but that the tip boards remained illegal.

Others tried to look past any legal issues surrounding tip boards. "This is going to help a lot of small businesses like mine," Dan O'Gara, the owner of O'Gara's Bar and Grill in St. Paul, said of the tip-board proposal. "This is going to help people stay in our business."

Both Dayton and Sen. Julie Rosen, R-Fairmont, the chief Senate author of stadium legislation, were visibly upset with not being made aware of the key features of the House plan, which features a $36 million tax break for the charitable gambling industry that reflected the wishes of House Speaker Kurt Zellers.

"Not telling the governor was a big mistake," Rosen said Monday.

"I'm part of the game here, too,'' she said. "I should have been told."

Rosen said she was lukewarm to the proposal. "I think it's got some issues if people think, or perceive to think, that it's unlawful," she said.

Dayton also warned that the legal questions surrounding tip boards would not pass muster with the bond houses that will be needed to finance construction of a new stadium. The state must come up with nearly $400 million for its share, which has left state leaders groping for the roughly $42 million a year needed to make debt payments without tapping the state's general fund.

Hennepin County officials also huddled with lawyers on Monday over a separate provision that would tap excess county sales tax money for Target Field as another funding backup.

"That's a travesty," said Hennepin County Commissioner Peter McLaughlin. "It is breaking faith with the people of Hennepin County. They are scrambling because they can't find their own solution to this problem, so they are taking other people's money. It's obscene."

County lawyers discussed Monday whether, depending on the wording of the final bill, the state could take the money without board approval. Even Rep. Morrie Lanning, R-Moorhead, the chief House author of the legislation, said he was unsure.

"This should give all levels of governments some heartburn," Hennepin County Board Chairman Mike Opat said. "I am against this because they are backing up [a] state revenue shortfall with a local tax."

Zellers said Monday he will not work actively for or against the stadium proposal.

"If it fits in with the schedule, as long as it's moving forward on a fair vote, I think it's proceeding along," he said. "I'm not going to exert any undue pressure to hurry it up or to slow it down."

Hours before the vote, Dayton made no predictions on the stadium proposal's chances of reaching his desk.

"The coin is flipping in the air and I don't know whether it is going to come down heads or tails," he said.

Some Republicans have said they envision a scenario in which Dayton might trade his approval of education and government reform provisions he has spoken against in exchange for their support for a stadium.

"No one has approached me with any of those suggestions or offers," Dayton said. "I have heard the rumors, but nothing at this point has come to pass."

mkaszuba@startribune.com • 651-925-5045 baird.helgeson@startribune.com • 651-925-5044

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Los Angeles - LP: B. Wilson 7 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: J. Grimm 8
Detroit - WP: M. Scherzer 3 FINAL
Kansas City - LP: J. Shields 2
Philadelphia 0 Top 4th Inning
Oakland 0
Toronto 1 Top 4th Inning
NY Yankees 1
Arizona 0 Top 4th Inning
Colorado 4
Boston - R. De La Rosa 6:05 PM
Baltimore - C. Tillman
Milwaukee - M. Garza 6:05 PM
Pittsburgh - E. Volquez
Washington - J. Zimmermann 6:10 PM
Miami - J. Cosart
NY Mets - J. Niese 6:10 PM
Atlanta - M. Minor
Chicago WSox - H. Noesi 6:10 PM
Tampa Bay - C. Archer
Cleveland - T. House 6:10 PM
Minnesota - T. May
Seattle - C. Young 6:10 PM
Houston - D. Keuchel
Cincinnati - M. Leake 6:15 PM
St. Louis - M. Wacha
San Francisco - Y. Petit 7:40 PM
San Diego - A. Cashner
Texas - C. Lewis 8:05 PM
LA Angels - J. Weaver
San Diego 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Buffalo
Dallas 9/21/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
Washington 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Houston 9/21/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
Minnesota 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New Orleans
Tennessee 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Baltimore 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cleveland
Green Bay 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Detroit
Indianapolis 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Oakland 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New England
San Francisco 9/21/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Denver 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Seattle
Kansas City 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Miami
Pittsburgh 9/21/14 7:30 PM
Carolina
Chicago 9/22/14 7:30 PM
NY Jets
NY Giants 9/25/14 7:25 PM
Washington
Connecticut 14 FINAL
So Florida 17
Old Dominion 45 FINAL
Rice 42
Troy 0 FINAL
(13) Georgia 66
Georgia Tech 27 FINAL
Virginia Tech 24
Eastern Mich 14 FINAL
(11) Michigan State 73
Iowa 24 FINAL
Pittsburgh 20
Bowling Green 17 FINAL
(19) Wisconsin 68
Maryland 34 FINAL
Syracuse 20
Tulane 13 FINAL
Duke 47
Hawaii 12 4th Qtr 5:52
Colorado 21
Marshall 41 4th Qtr 10:35
Akron 3
Army 21 3rd Qtr
Wake Forest 14
Virginia 16 3rd Qtr
(21) BYU 13
Central Mich 3 3rd Qtr
Kansas 7
Utah 13 3rd Qtr
Michigan 10
North Carolina 20 2nd Qtr 5:11
East Carolina 21
(6) Texas A&M 38 2nd Qtr 0:21
SMU 3
Rutgers 24 2nd Qtr 0:27
Navy 14
Florida 14 2nd Qtr 6:15
(3) Alabama 21
Louisville 7 1st Qtr 4:04
FIU 0
Texas State 14 Delayed 13:35
Illinois 6
Fla Atlantic 3 2nd Qtr 4:00
Wyoming 10
Indiana 14 2nd Qtr 8:00
(18) Missouri 7
San Jose St 7 2nd Qtr 1:15
Minnesota 10
Massachusetts 0 2nd Qtr 7:00
Penn State 20
Georgia State 5:00 PM
Washington
Appalachian St 6:00 PM
Southern Miss
Miss State 6:00 PM
(8) LSU
Northern Ill 6:00 PM
Arkansas
Middle Tennessee 6:00 PM
Memphis
Utah State 6:00 PM
Arkansas State
Miami-Ohio 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Idaho 6:00 PM
Ohio U
Ball State 6:00 PM
Toledo
(14) So Carolina 6:30 PM
Vanderbilt
(4) Oklahoma 6:30 PM
West Virginia
Ga Southern 6:30 PM
South Alabama
UNLV 7:00 PM
Houston
(22) Clemson 7:00 PM
(1) Florida State
Miami-Florida 7:00 PM
(24) Nebraska
New Mexico 7:00 PM
New Mexico St
California 9:00 PM
Arizona
Louisiana 9:30 PM
Boise State
(2) Oregon 9:30 PM
Washington St
San Diego St 9:30 PM
Oregon State
Texas Tech 9/25/14 6:30 PM
(25) Oklahoma State
Appalachian St 9/25/14 6:30 PM
Ga Southern
(12) UCLA 9/25/14 9:00 PM
(15) Arizona State
Middle Tennessee 9/26/14 7:00 PM
Old Dominion
Fresno State 9/26/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico
(1) Florida State 9/27/14 2:00 AM
NC State
Duke 9/27/14 2:00 AM
Miami-Florida
North Carolina 9/27/14 2:00 AM
(22) Clemson
Texas-El Paso 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(20) Kansas State
Tennessee 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(13) Georgia
Vanderbilt 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Kentucky
Wyoming 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(11) Michigan State
Northwestern 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
TCU 9/27/14 11:00 AM
SMU
Iowa 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Purdue
Tulane 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Rutgers
So Florida 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(19) Wisconsin
Colorado State 9/27/14 11:30 AM
Boston College
Western Mich 9/27/14 11:30 AM
Virginia Tech
Maryland 9/27/14 12:30 PM
Indiana
Akron 9/27/14 12:30 PM
Pittsburgh
Bowling Green 9/27/14 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
Arkansas 9/27/14 2:30 PM
(6) Texas A&M
Kent State 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Virginia
Western Ky 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Navy
Minnesota 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Michigan
Wake Forest 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Louisville
FIU 9/27/14 2:30 PM
UAB
Miami-Ohio 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Buffalo
Colorado 9/27/14 3:00 PM
California
Louisiana Tech 9/27/14 3:00 PM
(5) Auburn
Texas 9/27/14 3:00 PM
Kansas
Temple 9/27/14 3:00 PM
Connecticut
(16) Stanford 9/27/14 3:15 PM
Washington
TX-San Antonio 9/27/14 4:00 PM
Fla Atlantic
South Alabama 9/27/14 4:00 PM
Idaho
Cincinnati 9/27/14 5:00 PM
(23) Ohio State
Rice 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Southern Miss
(18) Missouri 9/27/14 6:00 PM
(14) So Carolina
Boise State 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Air Force
Central Mich 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Toledo
Troy 9/27/14 6:00 PM
ULM
New Mexico St 9/27/14 6:30 PM
(8) LSU
Memphis 9/27/14 6:30 PM
(10) Ole Miss
Texas State 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Tulsa
Washington St 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Utah
(9) Notre Dame 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Syracuse
(7) Baylor 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Iowa State
UNLV 9/27/14 7:00 PM
San Diego St
Illinois 9/27/14 8:00 PM
(24) Nebraska
Oregon State 9/27/14 9:30 PM
(17) USC
Nevada 9/27/14 9:30 PM
San Jose St
Vancouver FC 4:00 PM
Portland
Houston 6:00 PM
Philadelphia
New England 6:30 PM
Columbus
San Jose 6:30 PM
Montreal
Seattle 6:30 PM
Red Bull New York
D.C. 7:30 PM
Chicago
FC Dallas 9:30 PM
Los Angeles
Toronto 40 FINAL
Brt Columbia 23
Edmonton 6:00 PM
Hamilton
Calgary 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Montreal
Ottawa 9/21/14 3:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Montreal 9/26/14 6:00 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 9/26/14 9:00 PM
Edmonton
Hamilton 9/27/14 5:30 PM
Winnipeg
Brt Columbia 9/27/14 8:30 PM
Calgary
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans Noon
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pm
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pm
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit Noon
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo Noon
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay Noon
Nov 2 - vs. Washington Noon
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago Noon
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay Noon
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina Noon
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets Noon
Dec 14 - at Detroit Noon
Dec 21 - at Miami Noon
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago Noon

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How will the Vikings and Gophers do this weekend?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close