Senate targets stadium vote for Sunday

With MPR’s Tim Nelson…

The Vikings stadium bill is being targeted for a Sunday vote in the Minnesota Senate.

GOP Senate Majority Leader Dave Senjem said that was the plan after the bill was narrowly approved by the Senate Tax Committee. The committee held a nearly six hour hearing on the bill. The hearing was divisive as stadium opponents made every attempt to derail the bill.

The Senate Tax Committee approved the bill by one vote after stadium supporters urged the committee to get the bill to the Senate floor.

Senjem, who voted for the bill in committee, told reporters after the hearing that the Senate will vote on the bill regardless of whether it has enough votes to pass.

“By in large, the idea of a vote on the Minnesota Vikings this year is something we talked about for a long time,” Senjem said. “Up or down, whatever people decide in terms of their views, their faith in the bill, their districts, their personal convictions.”

The stadium author in the Senate, Sen. Julie Rosen, R-Fairmont, says she believes it has enough votes to pass.

Stadium opponents will push for changes to how the stadium is funded and aren’t willing to sign off on the deal Rosen and Gov. Dayton reached with the Vikings.

Sen. John Marty, DFL-Roseville, said he believes stadium users, not gamblers, diners or drinkers, should pay for the stadium. He backed a measure to pay for the stadium’s mortgage with on-site fees.

“To me, that’s a lot fairer way to do it,” Marty said. “Everybody who ‘s using the stadium would pay for it.”

Marty’s effort to amend the bill in the Tax Committee failed. He and several other stadium opponents are expected to work every angle to defeat the bill on Senate floor.

The House is also ready to vote on the bill. GOP House leaders, however, won’t say when that vote will be held.

GOP legislative leaders in both chambers say they hope to finish their work by Monday but members of both parties say that’s becoming less likely because of the amount of work that’s left to do.

  • Lauren Maker

    This story is factually incorrect. The Tax Committee DID NOT approve the stadium bill.

    The Tax Committee voted by a one vote margin to forward the measure to the Senate floor WITHOUT RECOMMENDATION.

    It’s a pass the buck move to get the entire body to vote on it so they didn’t have to make the tough decision in committee.

    What does that say about the bill (and the funding scheme) when the Tax Committee can’t recommend it?