Don Davis has been the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau chief since 2001, covering state government and politics for two dozen newspapers in the state. Don also blogs at Capital Chatter on Areavoices.
- Member for
- 5 years 2 months
ST. PAUL -- A debate a decade in the making began this afternoon as the state House considered whether to build a nearly $1 billion Vikings stadium. Right off kickoff, representatives decided the plan offered by Rep. Morrie Lanning, R-Moorhead, was not ready, even after 10 years of discussion. The House's first amendment increases Vikings' contribution to a stadium more than the team wants. Debate was expected to continue for hours, possibly well into Tuesday. "This is our one chance," Rep. John Kriesel, R-Cottage Grove, said. "This bill works.
ST. PAUL -- A debate a decade in the making began this afternoon as the state House considered whether to build a nearly $1 billion Vikings stadium. "This is our one chance," Rep. John Kriesel, R-Cottage Grove, said. "This bill works. It has been fine-tuned and it will build a stadium." Rep.
ST. PAUL -- The Minnesota House this afternoon passed a public works finance bill 99-32 that would spend nearly a half billion dollars on a wide range of projects, ranging from beginning a several-year Capitol building renovation project to fixing college buildings. Senators could take up the measure later today. In general, Democrats wanted to spend more money while Republicans preferred less. Rep.
ST. PAUL -- Purple electricity began filling the Minnesota Capitol this morning, hours before the state House is to begin debate on building a new Vikings stadium. "Build it now" chants filled the rotunda as Gov. Mark Dayton rallied Vikings fans and union workers this morning, and moments later representatives heard the chants as they gathered for the historic session. Debate on a $975 million stadium was not expected to begin until mid-afternoon or later, but Minnesotans clad in purple Vikings garb or hard hats began building a crowd when the Capitol doors opened for the day.
ST. PAUL -- A disagreement about how money should be divided between the state's two public college and university systems put the brakes on a public works funding bill minutes before Thursday night debate was to begin. Rep. Larry Howes, R-Walker, said Gov. Mark Dayton threatened to veto the bill if spending in the two systems was not closer to being balanced. The bill Howes and Sen. Dave Senjem, R-Rochester, wrote would have given $54 million to the University of Minnesota and $145 million to the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system, mostly for repair work.
ST. PAUL -- It will be a Monday night football game like none other. The Minnesota Legislature plans to finally debate a Vikings stadium plan Monday, a debate many predict to last 12 hours in each chamber. The $975 million facility is the single largest construction project state lawmakers ever have considered. "The Vikings and the governor believe the votes are there," House Speaker Kurt Zellers, R-Maple Grove, said Thursday in announcing the plan for a Monday vote. However, in the past couple of days even some stadium supporters have doubted there are enough votes to pass the plan.
ST. PAUL -- A Republican Vikings stadium plan has collapsed and legislative leaders decided to take votes on the original plan Monday, perhaps opening the door to end the 2012 Minnesota Legislature. However, leaders did not predict the existing plan would pass or say if they would try again if it fails. In a mid-day announcement, GOP leaders also said they would consider a $496 million public works finance bill separate from the stadium. The Senate today was to debate a Republican-written tax bill that Democratic Gov.
ST. PAUL -- Republican leaders and Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton plan to discuss a new GOP-written Vikings stadium proposal this afternoon, but the governor did not wait until then to say the idea could kill any chances of a stadium being approved. "The three of us have invited the speaker and Senate majority leader to a meeting this afternoon to see if anything can be salvaged out of this fiasco," Dayton said, with Democratic legislative leaders standing alongside him. Republicans agreed to the 1 p.m.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota Republican lawmakers say it is time for a Vikings stadium plan do-over. Republican leaders said Tuesday that they are crafting a plan less expensive for the state than one awaiting House and Senate votes. Gov. Mark Dayton and Democratic legislative leaders learn-ed of the proposal Tuesday morning and by telling reporters about it they forced Republicans who control the Legislature to reveal the concept that has been discussed in private for two weeks. While many Republicans ap-pear to like the plan, Democrats are upset they have not been involved.
ST. PAUL -- Republican lawmakers are writing a new Vikings stadium plan, upsetting Democrats, including Gov. Mark Dayton. House Majority Leader Matt Dean, R-Dellwood, late this afternoon said that he heard from fellow Republicans that the $975 million stadium plan, with $398 million of state money, was too expensive.