The latest in the Minnesota Vikings stadium scrum:
- State stadium negotiator Ted Mondale thinks he can get around Minneapolis’ voter-approved ban on using city money to fund a stadium without a referendum by instead having the city vote to direct the funds to stadium authority, and then that body would spend it on a stadium, so that “it really isn’t the city spending that money.” Pretty clever, eh? Except that apparently Mondale never asked the Minneapolis city council about his idea, and a majority of the council now opposes funding a Vikings stadium without a public vote, after councilmember Sandra Colvin Roy declared that doing so would thwart the “will of the people.” (She even cited the Occupy movement as a reason that government shouldn’t so easily dismiss voters’ concerns.) Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak retorted, “We’re not going to do a referendum in the city. We are going to have a referendum in a couple years when I stand for re-election.” He might want to check with George Petak before saying that too loudly.
- It looks like whatever state bill emerges to fund a stadium will use electronic pulltabs in bars and restaurants as its funding mechanism — which should come as no surprise, given that that’s pretty much the only option that doesn’t involve either raising taxes or getting sued by Native American tribes. It’s still early, though, and even if the state finds enough money for its share of a stadium, there’s still the matter of the local government share (see above) that the Vikings are insisting on.