The Minnesota Vikings’ quest for a new publicly-funded stadium will go before a third House panel on Monday.
With the Legislature returning from a 10-day spring break, the $975 million stadium proposal will be heard by the House Government Operations and Elections Committee on Monday evening. The 15-member panel could be a stiff test for the project because it is chaired by Rep. Joyce Peppin, R-Rogers, who has said she prefers a voter referendum on the stadium.
Rep. Morrie Lanning, R-Moorhead, the chief House author of stadium legislation, said Friday the stadium has “significant support” on the panel, which includes nine Republicans. “I would not hazard any kind of projection” on an outcome, he said however.
But Lanning said that, with the project likely to also face notable opposition, he was hoping for a strategy that would gingerly move the controversial stadium plan forward.
“The best we could hope for probably is a voice vote. Hopefully, it would be a voice vote,” said Lanning. He said a voice vote, which would not require legislators to individually record their votes, would allow the panel to avoid a definitive vote in order “to see this thing keep moving.”
Lanning however said he did not know whether Peppin and the panel would agree to a voice vote.
The House Commerce and Regulatory Reform Committee, which heard the stadium plan two weeks ago, similarly passed the project on a voice vote.
With time ticking away before the Legislature adjourns in the coming weeks, the Vikings stadium plan faces an uphill climb. Although the project has passed two House committees, it has yet to be approved by a Senate panel.