Dayton: Industry SHOULD be part of pulltab projections

MPR file photo/Mark Zdechlik

Governor Mark Dayton today sounded a different tone after critical remarks on whether the Gambling Control Board was as open as it should have been about the gambling industry’s role in estimating the revenue the state could expect from electronic pulltabs.

Asked about the industry’s role for a second day, he defended his administration’s previous consultations with the gambling industry, dating back to 2011, as state officials weighed whether electronic pulltabs would make enough to pay for the state share of a Vikings stadium:

“In my mind, my personal opinion, Gambling Control Board officials consulted with industry experts, its certainly understandable. They were creating something that didn’t exist before, so you had to turn to somebody that had some knowledge and expertise of the industry generally, and ask for their advice and their projections.”

The Associated Press quoted Dayton yesterday as saying he “wasn’t aware of the input from an industry that stood to profit from the new games,” and they should have been disclosed — even though his own administration cited industry input as a basis for its projections.

Dayton’s explanation today: he might have forgotten that part. Here’s how he actually put it:

“Well, I don’t track every legislative hearing, and there was a tremendous amount going on in those last weeks of the session, as there are in any legislative session. I am just telling you truthfully what I was aware of, what I wasn’t. If somebody told me something and I don’t recall it, that’s my responsibility. I don’t know that’s the case, but I was asked the question and I gave a truthful answer.”

You can see the video of his full remarks on the subject here.

In a separate interview, revenue commissioner Myron Frans said today that, yes, the gambling industry’s input was baked into the state’s electronic pulltab projections from the start, and that his agency was forthright about it.

“We exercised, I think, really great due diligence in examining all the data, which included industry data, and we tried to make that as obvious as we could to everybody, both in terms of testimony before the different hearings — I forget how many different hearings we testified to in the Legislature — but also in presenting this idea to the administration.”

That said, the governor also acknowledged that the root problem remains, and that his administration and the Legislature are going to have to work out the gap between the reality and the promise of electronic pulltabs:

“I don’t know what caused it to go awry. I know we’re going to work to correct it. I think the panic alarms are premature. We’ve got a reserve that’s covered. The bonds aren’t going to be issued until next fall. We’re going to push hard now to get these games throughout the state and being taken advantage of. You know, people that play them say they’re really a lot of fun, and they’re more fun than paper pulltabs, and once we get the charities going in, they’ll get up to speed and we’ll see where we stand.”

  • Gary F

    A fan? I’ve never been on one, and they look like fun, but being on a diet means my beer intake is a lot less than it ever has been. But then, I could stay I’m exercising while downing some stout.

    Without knowing all the legal mumbo jumbo…….

    What kind of insurance do they owners/drivers have to take?
    And the outdated concept of “presumed risk” comes into play.
    How do these people get home after their trip?
    Where do they stop to drain themselves?

    • Gary F

      But then, it is biking, and with the media’s current worshiping of all things bicycle, it must be good.

  • Sue de Nim

    No. They’re intensely annoying. Though I can enjoy being at a rowdy party on occasion, I definitely do not enjoy other people’s rowdy parties impinging on my work or quiet leisure, or driving safely and quickly to some destination. The idea of taking a mobile beer bash onto city streets is thoughtlessly selfish.

  • PaulJ

    No, and the bright colored clothing trend must also be stopped.

    • Pearly

      Yes! Brown shirts for all!

      • Gary F

        Minneapolis has Transit Police and Park Police, and Regular Police, and Police on Bikes, and Police on horses, so with all that LGA money, what not “Peddle Pub Police”!

        It’s for our own good. Right?

        • Pearly


          • PaulJ

            Whose beer hall do they think they’re putsch’n around?

  • david

    Have no issue with them, but I’m not the type to get all roadragy if someone in front of me won’t allow me to go 10 MPH over the speed limit.

    I’m surprised they don’t tip over more often. Seen those thing take corners nearly on 2 wheels to great cheers of the riders.

  • Jenna

    Yes! I think that it’s a typically safe, unique way to do a pub crawl. I think it’s safer than drunk pedestrians walking around or driving to bars. You are contained/confined to one space as you are traveling and it GUARANTEES a sober driver controlling it. The reason this made the news is because pedal pub accidents are RARE. I used to live in Uptown and I never saw any of the pedal pubs get too crazy.

  • Skyler Vilt

    They are dangerous distractions on the road. When they are taking up half a lane, it’s forcing drivers to either pass dangerously or slow down traffic precipitously. Additionally, what happens if an emergency vehicle has to get somewhere or navigate a turn quickly and a pedal pub is there? I can understand the appeal of the pedal pub but frankly they are more than a nuisance.

  • Dan Theman

    They are a slow moving hazard to traffic.If you look at the way they are designed with a very high center of gravity makes them vulnerable to tipping on corners if the speed is excessive. The passengers have little or no back support. Do we really want to promote alcohol consumption? I think not.

  • Sean

    Absalutely. They are fun, they add enjoyment, they invigorate the downtown environments. They are steered, slowed, controlled by a licensed operator. This was simply an accident. Id you don’t like them, don’t use them, but don’t ruin it for those that may enjoy a little fun. As for this accident, perhaps looking into why it tipped would be a good idea.

  • Mia


  • Jeff

    Why not simply put some roll bars on the sides…that way if it tips it won’t be falling on top of anyone.

    • david

      Sounds like a pragmatic solution to the real problem. Unfortunately I think most people’s issue with them is they think they own the road and everyone and everything else needs to get out of their way.

      • Jeff

        Just like most bikers, I have more respect for pedal pubs…at least they are accomplishing the act of drinking beer.

    • JQP

      the entire thing should be redesigned as a giant, soft-sided, floating hamster-ball. With flashing lights, warning klaxons and a pungent reek to warn those who are visually and hearing impaired. Oh Wait … the pungent reek is already being worked on by the sweating beer consumers.

  • KTN

    Until I learned they were sentient and would turn on the riders I was a fan, but now, not so much.

  • Abbey

    Having rode on one last year, I would say that I’m a fan of the concept but definitely not the execution. They have no back support and it would be very easy to fall out of them. Additionally they are really hard to motor! Its a lot of work to keep the thing moving. Regardless of this event I am steering clear (pun intended) of these things from now on. I’d much rather have a drink with friends without killing my knees and sweating like crazy.

  • Max

    No. They are essentially pub crawls on wheels. I dislike large groups of rowdy, binge drinking people. It’s totally expected near campus or downtown, but it seems that things like pedal pub and party bus extend the range of this behavior, making it unavoidable. Plus, for whatever reason, people on the pedal pub tour seem to think the event extends them license to act extra loud and obnoxious in whatever bar they descend upon. You have a right to be jackass in public, but that doesn’t mean it’s appropriate or socially acceptable behavior.

  • IceStormer

    About 2 years ago, I drove past an ‘incident’ at 3rd Ave & 2nd St. A rider had fallen off the pedalpub and was lying injured in the intersection with a jacket covering him/her. There were several people standing about talking on their mobiles so I assumed 911 had been called. There was no report of it in the papers nor on the television stations that night or the next day. I have to wonder how many ‘incidents’ like this go unreported, and how safe these things really are.

    I am not a fan of pedalpubs, but if folks want to take the risks involved and accept responsibility for their decisions, then go right ahead. Just don’t block traffic when something untoward happens.

  • NathanT

    No. They’re a menace on a good day, even worse when they use predominantly residential neighborhoods with narrow streets as a route.

  • Jim G

    Nope. Never been on one, because my rule is alcohol and riding in traffic is a bad combination. One’s reaction to alcohol is highly individual. Some drunks get cranky, then there’s randy, sleepy, dopey, angry, crazy, and just plain stupid. Which one do you want driving?

  • I live in a mad nation

    I encountered them on the mall last year while taking photographs, and found them an embarrassment. Personally, just to watch suffering people trying to make the best of it, but especially to those riding them when you take a photo. Their reactions demonstrated to me they felt they were in an awkward situation made more obvious by the photo snap. They’ll likely die of their own burden: the onus of public drinking.

  • snyde043

    I participated in a Pedal Pub tour a couple years ago. It was pretty fun. I think there are probably accommodations that could be made to neighborhoods as far as how late tours run in the evenings to keep from being a nuisance, but other than that, I would say the benefits outweigh the negatives. If Pedal Pubs are the worst thing you have to deal with, be thankful for your apparently otherwise great life.

  • JQP

    No. the theory that you can mix a technically healthy activity ( biking) with a technically unhealthy activity (drinking ) has been proven to have singularly disastrous outcomes.
    I’ll cite softball for now. Sure most of the time , its fun to have a brewski and pretend to run a few bags…. but standing in left field with a beer = trouble… Even worse at first base.

  • Heisenberg

    No. super-annoying.

  • MN Jeff

    Wow, what a forum for the “ban everything” crowd. How many people are really negatively impacted by this?

    What else would they do away with? Walkers on the paths around the lakes to make room for more bikes? Parking on residential streets to make room for more street joggers (a new oddity)? Sidewalk café’s because they reduce the space available for people to walk? I am personally annoyed by the vast amount of restrictions already placed on our daily activities.
    Lighten up people.

    • Max

      Who said anything about banning anything? The question asks if you are a fan of pedal pubs. People are expressing their opinions on whether or not they like pedal pubs, not proposing regulation.

      • Jeff

        Step 1 in banning something is getting a consensus that everyone dislikes a certain activity. Step 2 is everyone looking at each other and saying “What can we do to stop this behavior?”. Step 3 is going to government and getting a ban implemented. That’s the busybody’s guide to government involvement in every aspect of our lives.

        • Max

          It’s possible to dislike something and still acknowledge someone’s right to do it. This forum isn’t even at step 1 and you are necessarily concluding that 2 and 3 are short to follow. People are entitled to express their opinions without having someone brand it as a liberal conspiracy to deprive you of your freedoms.

  • kerschmidtlap

    I don’t think my mother would want to see me go by on one. But if you want to, go ahead. Just not what I consider to be in the best taste.

  • kerschmidtlap

    Actually if I were to be honest I’d have to say that I prefer to stay home behind locked doors, drawn shades and drink where I can’t be seen. Heh, heh.