Vikings stadium financing plan offered: Supportive legislators’ cities pay

Depending on whom you listen to — if you’re still listening at all — the Vikings stadium bill is in trouble at the Capitol.

And a bill filed in the House today should stoke the flames a bit.

Filed by Bloomington stadium opponent Rep. Ann Lenczewski, it reads like this:


Construction of a new National Football stadium may not be funded from any tax imposed by Hennepin County. Notwithstanding any other law, or local government ordinance or charter provision to the contrary, any provision made in a law authorizing a new stadium that requires the imposition of a new tax or the diversion of an existing tax from its current authorized uses in Hennepin County as a backup revenue source is void, and is replaced with a requirement that a portion of the property taxes levied by and collected for the following jurisdictions be used as a backup revenue source instead:

(1) Cook County; and

(2) the cities of Fairmont, Blue Earth, Winnebago, Lake Crystal, Rochester, Moorhead, North Mankato, Worthington, Brooklyn Park, Preston, Lanesboro, La Crescent, Maplewood, Glenwood, Sauk Centre, Cottage Grove, Newport, and St. Paul Park.

The percentage of property tax remitted from each jurisdiction may not exceed… percent of its adjusted net tax capacity and the percentage must be the same for all jurisdictions. The appropriate county auditor for each affected jurisdiction shall calculate the allocated revenues and remit them to the commissioner of management and budget for deposit in the general fund. All the provisions regarding notification, administration, and use of a Hennepin County tax in the original authorizing legislation shall apply to the notification, administration, and use of local property taxes in this section.

EFFECTIVE DATE.This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Why would cities far away from a stadium location be asked to pay for a new Vikings stadium? Let’s see:

Cook County — Home of Sen. Tom Bakk, the Senate Minority Leader, who has tied the stadium to jobs.

Fairmont — Represented by Sen. Julie Rosen, who is the chief Senate sponsor of a stadium bill.

Moorhead — Represented by Morrie Lanning, chief House sponsor of a stadium bill.

Cottage Grove, Newport, St. Paul Park — Represented by John Kriesel, a co-author of the Vikings stadium legislation

Preston — Home of Rep. Greg Davids, a member of the committee that passed a stadium funding bill this week.

North Mankato — Represented by DFLer Terry Morrow. “I do believe the team will leave if we do not pass this stadium bill,” said Rep. Morrow told the Associated Press this week.

Brooklyn Park is a little tougher to figure. Sen. Benjamin Kruse, R-Brooklyn Park, leans in opposition to the stadium bill.

The bill isn’t going anywhere, but it would be interesting to determine if legislators’ positions would change if their constituents have more financial skin in the game.

  • Kevin Watterson

    Brooklyn Park might be Rep. Mike Nelson.

  • Bob Vandenakker

    This is perfect. It fixes the issue that Target Field had where everyone who didn’t live in Hennepin County voted for the tax increase in Hennepin County. Several lawmakers said it sure was easy for those who weren’t going to pay the tax to make that vote.

  • bsimon

    Find a way to tie it to the districts of those who vote yes. Don’t limit the pain to the sponsors, but to anyone who votes for it. Ideally rewrite the twins stadium funding to do the same.

  • John O.

    If such a ploy became reality, just imagine the possibilities! If your legislator votes for school funding, your legislative district gets a piece of the action. Opposed to taxes? No worries! If my legislator votes against taxes, then we don’t have to pay them! What a deal!

    These people have been elected to do a job and, as near as I can tell, are failing miserably at it. On both sides of the political aisle. Suck it up legislators and put the Vikings stadium up for a vote in the full house and full senate. Up or down, but have the courage to push the darn button and get this over with. Then go home.