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Gov. Dayton Balks At New Taxes To Fund Vikings Stadium

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(credit: CBS) Pat Kessler
Pat Kessler knows Minnesota politics. He's been on the beat long...
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ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) – The plans to build a new stadium for the Minnesota Vikings whether it be in Minneapolis or Arden Hills, hit a significant stumbling block Tuesday at the State Capitol.

Gov. Mark Datyon and legislative leaders said there is no support for a sales tax increase to fund the stadium unless voters have their say in a referendum.

The move essentially takes using sales taxes as a means to help fund the stadium off the table. On the surface it would seem to be a setback for a Vikings stadium in Arden Hills. But the Vikings said Arden Hills is not off the table.

Only a county sales tax to pay for it is off the table. Gov. Dayton said lawmakers are now looking at other funding sources for a stadium. The one with the most support: Electronic pull tab machines in bars around the state.

“I think the electronic pull tabs probably has the most promise at this point in terms of broad enough support in this legislature,” Dayton said. “I dont speak for the legislative leaders, they have to speak for themselves and their members. My sense is that it’s the most immediately available and plausible source right now.”

Dayton said this is not a setback, but rather a step forward.

In the world of politics it’s actually better to eliminate the options that don’t work, and focus on the ones that might.

Dayton still plans to introduce a bill for a Vikings stadium that can be discussed among legislative leaders before it would go to vote in a special session later this month, shortly before Thanksgiving.

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