North Star State Facility Notes: MSFA Could Jointly Run Xcel Energy Center, Target Center
In St. Paul, Doug Belden reported Xcel Energy Center and Target Center “would be run jointly under a bill" backed by Minnesota lawmakers from St. Paul and Minneapolis. The bill “calls for a study by February of the feasibility of establishing joint administration, financing and operations of the facilities.” A new governance structure “coordinating marketing, promotion and scheduling efforts" would take effect by ‘15. The bill states that the joint governance "could come about as part of the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority, which was set up in law last spring as part of the Vikings stadium bill” (ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS, 4/1).
HOUSE MONEY: Belden reported the Minnesota legislative panel set up to oversee sports facilities yesterday in its first meeting "delayed grappling" with the issue that electronic charitable gaming revenue intended to pay the state's $348M share of the new Vikings stadium is "just a slow trickle." State Rep. Jim Davnie said that he "believed lawmakers would have to consider delaying the August bond sale if they're not confident payments could be made without tapping the state's general fund -- even if it delays start of construction on the new stadium, scheduled for this fall" (TWINCITIES.com. 4/2).
CAN'T GOPHER THAT: In Minneapolis, Amelia Rayno wrote under the header, "Could Tubby Smith Buyout Hurt The U's Chances Of Getting Funds For A Practice Facility?" The Univ. of Minnesota, which last week terminated men's basketball coach Tubby Smith and agreed to a $2.5M buyout, has “a lot of new facilities on the brain, the master blueprint" of which could cost as much as $125M and would include "a long-coveted practice facility.” UM AD Norwood Teague “has not stated how much money, if any,” the school “would be seeking from the state, but it asking for some assistance wouldn’t come as a surprise” (STARTRIBUNE.com, 4/2). Minnesota state Rep. Gene Pelowski called the buyout "obscene" (POSTBULLETIN.com, 4/1).