Thursday, March 18, 2010
Vikes struggle for traction on stadium issue
By Kevin Seifert
A few of you have asked if there has been any progress for Minnesota's latest stadium proposal during the current session of the state legislature. The answer is pretty much "no."
The Vikings say they've made progress behind the scenes, but a lobbyist for the team's Metrodome landlord painted a dim picture of the chances a bill would make it to the floor in 2010.
During a meeting Thursday of the Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission, lobbyist Bill McGrann said the stadium issue isn't likely to be considered until the end of next month. The session is scheduled to end May 17 but is more likely to adjourn early, according to this Star Tribune report.
As a result, McGrann said during the meeting: "The chances are getting slimmer by the day that there will be any sort of consideration of the Vikings/stadium/commission issue."
Vikings vice president Lester Bagley said the team is still hoping for serious consideration before the legislature wraps up for the spring. But at this point, substantive discussion appears imminent.
The Vikings' Metrodome lease expires after the 2011 season. Owner Zygi Wilf has declined to sign an extension. I've maintained all along that this issue will reach crisis proportions before it is dealt with in a meaningful way, and I have no reason to change that stance now.