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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Joe McDonald (R)

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Vikings stadium update

Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Fellow Vikings fan, The Vikings are becoming an increasingly popular topic of discussion lately … and it has little to do with their 2-7 record. People throughout our area are curious to learn my take or want to pass along their opinions on the proposed construction of a new Vikings stadium. Stadium construction always seems to be a touchy subject in Minnesota, but a couple of key factors are striking our nerves a little harder this time. First, we are still working to recover from the deepest recession since the Great Depression. The state is in a cycle of continual budget shortfalls and we expect to soon receive word we face another one. We cannot afford to publicly fund a stadium since we have other responsibilities and obligations such as public safety, education, healthcare, and other core government functions that need attention and must take priority. That said, these are the Vikings we are talking about, Minnesota’s most popular team and a great source of state pride passed down from one generation to the next for the last 50 years. I have been a fan since the Purple People Eaters days; I do not wish to see the Vikings leave and will do what is fair and reasonable to help keep them here. I support using creative ways to fund a new stadium, such as using revenue generated from Racino, scratch-offs, and/or lottery sales, I do not believe the Legislature should be spending our tax dollars to publicly finance a private football stadium. Once again, thank you to all the people who continue providing me with input on this issue and I welcome your ideas for how we can responsibly meet this challenge. I will keep your comments in mind when we are presented with formal proposals. Skol! Joe
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