Talking Points: The Vikings’ City Council Hurdles

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — This week the Minnesota Vikings will be taking their stadium proposal to the legislature for hearings.

The final details of the proposal were announced this week as part of an agreement between the city of Minneapolis, the state and the team.

While the legislature promises to be a tough sell, the Minneapolis City Council maybe tougher.

The state’s $398 million share will come from electronic pull tabs, a measure that appears to have legislative support because those pull tabs would also help local charities.

The city’s share of the deal is $339 million, which critics say over the next 30 years with interest will actually amount to more than $600 million.

Appearing on WCCO Sunday Morning Minneapolis City Council Member Gary Schiff says a majority of city council members believe Minneapolis voters will have to approve the city’s share.

“It’s been portrayed that the city council wants to avoid a vote and pass it on to the people but it is actually the people’s law,” Schiff said. “In 1997, 70 percent of Minneapolis voters adopted a change to the city charter that says we have a right to say if more than $10 million is ever spent on the financing of a professional sports stadium.”

The legislature could approve a provision that would allow a citywide vote to be bypassed. The Vikings have committed to kicking in $754 million.

You can watch WCCO Sunday Morning with Esme Murphy every Sunday at 10 a.m.

More from Esme Murphy
  • art

    Please, Minnesota Legislature, stop this 1.5 Billion Dollars Boondoggle.

  • Iron Ranger

    Art – This stadium is going to be be built. You may not like it, but its going to get built. I am old enough to remember the same discussions were held when Met Stadium was built, the Met Center was built, the St Paul Civic Center was built, The Target Center was built, the Metrodome the Target Field was built and the Excel Center was built. Everyone who writes on this blog needs to pick up another cause. How about contraceptive? This seems to be an important subject, surely more than the 13,000 jobs this project will employ. I heard Rush Limbaugh will buy as many asprin that it take to give to Georgetown University females to stop getting them impregnated. Isnt that the important subject Repubs are asking for. Who needs jobs in this economy?

    • Tom

      @ Iron Ranger

      I agree with you!

  • ignatz

    Spending well over a billion dollars to move a slightly modified domed stadium a few yards to the east is a shameless waste of taxpayer money. And, no matter how Bagley, Dayton, Rybak and others try to spin it (e.g. no money from the general fund), it is STILL TAXPAYER MONEY.

    Legislature and city council – PLEASE DEFEAT THIS INSANE USE OF OUR MONEY!

    • Nate

      What stadium project were you reading about?

      • you know

        The one in Arden Hills. Er, ah … the one in Shakopee. Oops, ahhhh, no, the one in Prior Lake. Oh wait! No. The one in Minneapolis, by that church. No, not that one, I mean the one over by that market thing. Uh, ummm, no, that can’t be it … it must be the one …. awwwww heck, I don’t know. But I readed it somewheres.

        • Nate

          No where have I read about “spending well over a billion dollars to move a slightly modified dome stadium a few yards to the east”.

          • Consider this

            Apparently you’re not one of those “thinkers.” Perhaps I can jump in here and be of assistance.

            Most likely the “well over a billion dollars” comes from adding a 30 year interest factor to the bonds that will bear interest that needs to be paid. That information was on here and on the ‘cco news yesterday and it was pointed out by Esme that the interest number wasn’t included in the figures that were released.

            I don’t know about the “few yards to the east” but it doesn’t take a lot of mental horsepower to look at any of the diagrams or graphics that have been presented and see the superimposition of the “new” dome over the “old” dome and, hey, there’s not a whole lot of movement there. More obviously, the latest proposal uses the existing site, not the previously discussed Minneapolis sites such as the basilica or farmer’s market areas and certainly not Arden Hills.

            As for the slightly modified comment, I’m not aware that any real specifics have been made public yet but, again, if you look at the graphics presented, the size of the old dome and the proposed new dome don’t differ by much. We know Zygi wants more suites and “special seating” to bring in more bucks, we know the fans want more restrooms and wider corridors, and that’s about it so far. Still, when you consider the plan is to spend a billion bucks on this, I don’t think it’s too far out to question how much of an improvement you’re going to get over the old dome. You don’t need to agree but at the moment I sure don’t see a billion dollar improvement. Plus, everybody seems to have avoided providing any specifics about what they’re going to do about tailgating.

            So, maybe you could stop picking apart every letter in somebody’s post and try to stick to the idea being presented.

  • Swamp Rat

    Well sports fans, sports soothsayers, and sports prognosticators here we go again for another ten years while the Vikings just disappear into the dust of time and good intentions. Much is at stake, so quit your bellyaching and build the new domed venue and start making some revenue. Otherwise, veto the proposal and lose the Vikings and the chance to make some needed spare change for the state.

    Haven’t you had enough malicious, ignominious, and vociferous debates for the last 12 years? Don’t you agree?

  • seth

    Gov. Mark Dayton is calling it The People’s Stadium.

    Here’s a break down on who would pay for what:

    – The state’s $398 million share would come from new electronic pulltabs.

    – The city of Minneapolis would kick in $339 million.

    – The Vikings would give $754 million to build it and operate it.

    Grand Total = $1.5 Billion Dollars.

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