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singersp
03-08-2006, 02:27 PM
Blaine stadium opponents get boost from Fed official

Opponents of the proposal for a new stadium for the Minnesota Vikings in Anoka County found a friend Tuesday in Art Rolnick, research director for the Federal Reserve Bank in Minneapolis.

Last update: March 07, 2006 – 10:36 PM

Opponents of the proposal for a new stadium for the Minnesota Vikings in Anoka County found a friend Tuesday in Art Rolnick, research director for the Federal Reserve Bank in Minneapolis.

Speaking to a local business group, Rolnick said that public subsidies for stadiums are generally not economically beneficial, and that the proposal should face a citizens referendum. "It's not an engine for economic growth at all," he said.

Rolnick spoke to a local chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business, an advocacy group for small businesses, which is targeting Anoka County's plan to raise $280 million through a countywide sales tax to help build a Vikings stadium in Blaine. The county and the Vikings are seeking an exemption to a state law requiring a referendum on a proposed sales tax.

"Blaine has a lot of success, a lot of growth, and that's prime property," Rolnick said. "Do we think it wouldn't get developed at all" without public money?

Rolnick added that, without a referendum, there would be "a real conflict of interest" because citizens would be allowing "the political system to do favors for a specific individual company."

Not everyone was impressed with Rolnick's speech. Steve Novak, Anoka County's director of governmental services, said the stadium probably would not be built without public money. "I don't think so. And of course, that's not what [Vikings owner Zygi] Wilf says," he said. Novak said the Vikings stadium would be "the next generation Metrodome," which he said even Rolnick admits has been "a winner."

MIKE KASZUBA
Star Tribune

Blaine stadium opponents get boost from Fed official (http://www.startribune.com/510/story/292098.html)

Prophet
03-08-2006, 03:44 PM
KFFL
Vikings | Stadium opponents find a new friend
Wed, 8 Mar 2006 05:35:12 -0800

Mike Kaszuba, of the Star Tribune, reports opponents of the proposal for a new stadium for the Minnesota Vikings in Anoka County found a friend Tuesday in Art Rolnick, research director for the Federal Reserve Bank in Minneapolis. Rolnick said that public subsidies for stadiums are generally not economically beneficial, and that the proposal should face a citizen's referendum. "It's not an engine for economic growth at all," he said. Rolnick spoke to a local chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business. That group is targeting Anoka County's plan to raise $280 million through a countywide sales tax to help build a Vikings stadium in Blaine. "Blaine has a lot of success, a lot of growth, and that's prime property," Rolnick said. "Do we think it wouldn't get developed at all" without public money?"