The Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority (MSFA), the agency that runs U.S. Bank Stadium, has eliminated about $100,000 from the public payroll.
Chairman Michael Vekich said Thursday that the MSFA no longer will have a full-time communications staff member. The only person to hold the job has been Jennifer Hathaway, whose last day with the MSFA was Monday.
Communications duties for now will be handled by Lisa Niess, the marketing and communications manager for SMG, the company that manages and books stadium events. Hathaway, a state employee, was hired by former Executive Director Ted Mondale and MSFA Chairwoman Michele Kelm-Helgen in 2013.
After the Metrodome was demolished in 2014, she handled communications during the construction of the $1.1 billion U.S. Bank Stadium through its opening on Aug. 3, 2016.
The MSFA still has a communications consulting contract with Denny Shields, formerly of the Weber Shandwick public relations firm. Vekich said Shields is paid $200 an hour, not to exceed $3,000 a month.
Niess has been in her position since before the building opened and works closely with Patrick Talty, general manager for SMG.
Since Niess is employed by SMG, her salary is not public.