2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Minn. Senate panel revives Vikings stadium bill

By BRIAN BAKST and JON KRAWCZYNSKI - Associated Press
    2012-04-20 20:14

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - A Minnesota Senate committee narrowly approved a public subsidy on Friday to help the Vikings build a new football stadium, reviving the team's struggling effort just hours after NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell visited the state Capitol to jumpstart what had been a stalled stadium debate.

The Senate's Local Government and Elections Committee passed the bill on an 8-6 vote after a hearing that stretched nearly four hours. While the stadium bill still faces a long haul in the waning days of Minnesota's legislative session, the committee's vote gave the $975 million stadium proposal new life four days after a companion bill's defeat in a House committee sparked near panic among supporters.

``We're very pleased with the progress and that the bill moved forward,'' Lester Bagley, the Vikings' vice president for stadium development, said after the Senate committee vote. ``It's been an up and down week, touch and go.''

The setback in the House had prompted the visit Friday by Goodell. He and Pittsburgh Steelers owner Art Rooney II met Friday morning with Gov. Mark Dayton and legislative leaders to stress the urgency of resolving the Vikings' decadelong pursuit of a replacement for the Metrodome.

Though the Vikings will play next season in the dome, their lease there has expired. That has raised fears the franchise could get snatched by Los Angeles or another city seeking its own football team - a prospect Goodell did not exactly squelch.

``They were here basically to say, `This is it folks,''' Dayton said after the meeting.

A simmering movement to put a franchise in Los Angeles came up in the discussion at the prompting of lawmakers, Dayton said. Sen. Julie Rosen, a Republican sponsoring the stadium bill, said legislative leaders heard that Los Angeles is an option, even if there was no explicit threat from the NFL.

``There is no ultimatum, but we did clearly talk about LA. We did clearly talk about that is an open market,'' Rosen said. ``I do believe there is a feeling in some legislators and even in some folks throughout the state that they would never leave. So it was good to hear from the NFL, and from a very prominent owner, that they do have the right to move or be sold.''

Vikings officials, including owners Zygi and Mark Wilf, were not present at the meeting. Afterward, most who were in the room said the need to act is urgent.

``There were no implied threats or any threats at all,'' Goodell said. ``What we talked about is the importance of creating a solution here that works for the team, that works for the community. This isn't a new issue. It's been discussed here for several years. I think the legislative leaders and the governor understand the time is now.''

Dayton has pushed for a stadium deal for months, saying the state is at risk of losing the team just as it did the Lakers long ago.

Moving the team is not permissible under league rules this year, but there's always 2013. The Vikings have been contacted before by two separate groups trying to lure a team and build a stadium in Los Angeles but have said, for now, they're not interested in selling.

Under the bill approved by the Senate committee, the Vikings would pay $427 million of the construction costs for the new stadium, which would be built on the Metrodome site in downtown Minneapolis. City and state taxpayers would be on the hook for the other $548 million, or 56 percent of the total cost.

Dayton said the state leaders didn't ask league officials to enhance the private contribution in the financing package. He said the NFL delegation ran through a league loan program that could give the team access to up to $200 million, but it has long been believed franchise owners had figured that money into their calculations.

The closeness of the Senate committee's vote demonstrated concerns still held by a number of lawmakers, with some senators raising opposition to an expansion of gambling that's part of the proposal's funding package. Some also raised the larger issue of providing a public subsidy to benefit a wealthy football team owner.

``I think some of us are just trying to represent the good wishes of many Minnesotans,'' said Republican Sen. Roger Chamberlain, who voted against the bill.

The Senate bill heads next to another committee of that chamber. Lawmakers are hoping to wrap up their session before the end of April.

---

Associated Press writer Patrick Condon contributed to this report.

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Peyton ManningDec 18 07:22p

Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning (thigh, illness) said his illness is behind him, and he was receiving treatment for his thigh Thursday, Dec. 18. Head coach John Fox called Manning day-to-day.

Roy MillerDec 18 07:12p

The Jacksonville Jaguars have declared DL Andre Branch, CB Jeremy Harris, SS Matt Daniels, DL Roy Miller, CB Teddy Williams, WR Tommy Streeter, OG Tyler Shatley inactive for Week 16.

Tommy StreeterDec 18 07:12p

The Jacksonville Jaguars have declared DL Andre Branch, CB Jeremy Harris, SS Matt Daniels, DL Roy Miller, CB Teddy Williams, WR Tommy Streeter, OG Tyler Shatley inactive for Week 16.

Kendall WrightDec 18 07:12p

Tennessee Titans WR Kendall Wright (hand) is active for Week 16 after being limited in practice all week.

Frank GoreDec 18 07:02p

San Francisco 49ers RB Frank Gore (concussion) continues through the concussion protocol this week, but head coach Jim Harbaugh anticipates Gore suiting up in Week 16 against the San [ More ]

Julius ThomasDec 18 06:52p

Denver Broncos TE Julius Thomas (ankle) played just 29 snaps in Week 15; only ten of them were pass routes, according to Pro Football Focus.

Rashad JenningsDec 18 06:12p

New York Giants RB Rashad Jennings (ankle) did not practice Thursday, Dec. 18.

Carlos HydeDec 18 05:52p

San Francisco 49ers RB Carlos Hyde (ankle) did not practice Thursday, Dec. 18.

DeAndre HopkinsDec 18 05:42p

Houston Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins (ankle) did not practice for the second straight day Thursday, Dec. 18.

Blake BortlesDec 18 04:22p

Jacksonville Jaguars QB Blake Bortles has earned positive reviews from the team in his rookie season after being thrust into the spotlight early this year. 'That is not the [ More ]

Jay CutlerDec 18 04:12p

Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler was benched just for this week against the Detroit Lions, according to head coach Marc Trestman. Cutler will be active and serve as the [ More ]

DeAngelo WilliamsDec 18 04:02p

Carolina Panthers RB DeAngelo Williams (hand) will be fitted cast that he can play with on his injured hand. Williams still has not caught a pass with the injured [ More ]

Rashad JenningsDec 18 04:02p

New York Giants RB Rashad Jennings (ankle) has not been able to do any running this week, according to head coach Tom Coughlin.

Ryan MathewsDec 18 03:42p

San Diego Chargers RB Ryan Mathews (ankle) did not participate in practice Thursday, Dec. 18.

Cam NewtonDec 18 02:52p

Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton (back) fully participated in practice Thursday, Dec. 18, and appears to be on track to start in Week 16, according to head coach Ron Rivera.

DeMarco MurrayDec 18 02:42p

Dallas Cowboys RB DeMarco Murray (hand), who was expected to take some team snaps in practice Thursday, Dec. 18, is in no more risk if he plays in Week [ More ]

Cam NewtonDec 18 02:12p

Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton (back) said he is not dealing with any pain in his back but is taking things one day at a time. Newton said he [ More ]

Peyton ManningDec 18 02:02p

Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning (thigh) left practice early Thursday, Dec. 18, because he is receiving a scheduled day of rest. Manning was not limping when he was walking to the locker room.

LeSean McCoyDec 18 01:32p

Philadelphia Eagles RB Chris Polk appears to have become the team's goal-line back of late, and two of the three snaps he played in Week 15 led to short [ More ]

Chris PolkDec 18 01:32p

Philadelphia Eagles RB Chris Polk appears to have become the team's goal-line back of late, and two of the three snaps he played in Week 15 led to short [ More ]

Cam NewtonDec 18 01:22p

Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton (back) had an increased set of repetitions in practice Thursday, Dec. 18, and it looks like he's on track to play in Week 16 [ More ]

Rashad JenningsDec 18 12:52p

New York Giants RB Rashad Jennings (ankle) is not participating in practice Thursday, Dec. 18.

Andre JohnsonDec 18 12:52p

Houston Texans WR Andre Johnson (concussion) has cleared the leagues concussion protocol and will play in the team's Week 16 game.

Julio JonesDec 18 12:12p

Atlanta Falcons WR Julio Jones (hip) is not participating in practice Thursday, Dec. 18.

Case KeenumDec 18 10:03a

Houston Texans QB Case Keenum is expected to start in Week 16.

Philip RiversDec 18 09:22a

San Diego Chargers QB Philip Rivers (back) is battling a back injury that is more severe than the team has acknowledged, according to a league source. Rivers' back injury [ More ]

LeSean McCoyDec 18 01:03a

Philadelphia Eagles RB LeSean McCoy opened practice on the sidelines Wednesday, Dec. 17, while RB Chris Polk opened with first-team reps. After practice McCoy did not seem too concerned. [ More ]

Ronnie HillmanDec 18 01:03a

The Denver Broncos are hopeful RB Ronnie Hillman (foot) will be able to return for the Week 16 game against the Cincinnati Bengals Monday, Dec. 22, or for the [ More ]

Drew StantonDec 17 07:33p

Arizona Cardinals QB Drew Stanton (knee) said this injury is different from any other he's ever had, and he said it's too soon to know if he could return [ More ]

Carlos HydeDec 17 07:03p

San Francisco 49ers RBs Frank Gore (concussion) and Carlos Hyde (ankle) did not take part in practice Wednesday, Dec. 17.

Jay CutlerDec 17 06:43p

Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler will be benched in favor of QB Jimmy Clausen in Week 16 against the Detroit Lions, according to a source.

Jimmy ClausenDec 17 06:43p

Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler will be benched in favor of QB Jimmy Clausen in Week 16 against the Detroit Lions, according to a source.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group