Posted: 12/06/12 01:43
by Dave Mindeman
About a year ago, I posed this problem when we were discussing the Vikings Stadium....
Back to gambling. Although electronic pull tabs seems to have the least objections, I'm not convinced that it can bring in enough revenue to fulfill state obligations.
Back in February, Dayton said this in an interview with MPR regarding the stadium bonding via pull tabs:
Wurzer: I have to ask you about the Vikings stadium. We have a report this morning from [MPR reporter] Tim Nelson that basically says counting on gambling revenues can be kind of risky and sometimes the revenues raised don't meet projections. What happens if, say, electronic pull tabs, which you support to raise the state's share of a new Vikings stadium, don't bring in enough money?
Dayton: Well, we're going to have to commit revenues from whatever sources that are greater than the actual amount to pay off the bonds. If there's, say, $300 [million] to $400 million of bonds issued, that would take about $40 million a year in proceeds to pay it off ... So the people who are going to buy the bonds are going to require that the revenue stream be more than $40 million, as much as $60 [million], maybe even as much as $70 million.
So we'll have to allow for a shortfall as part of the equation, and we're prepared to do that. It may require another source in addition to expanding electronic pull tabs, because as you say, no one knows for sure until it starts exactly what revenues it will bring in. But we'll have to cover it in order to proceed with the bond sale.
Wurzer: Any idea of where another pot of money could come from?
Dayton: There are various possibilities being talked about, but I don't have anything in mind right now.
That was then -- this is now--
Minnesota's new electronic pull tabs aren't generating as much revenue for the Minnesota Vikings stadium as originally projected, leading Minnesota Management & Budget to reduce its future projections as part of its latest budget forecast on Wednesday.
They tell us there is no need to panic....
Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority Chair Michele Kelm-Helgen said there's no need to panic, noting that these are projections for reserve funds above and beyond the amount needed to cover the bonds for the state's $350 million share of the nearly $1 billion stadium.
Panic? Who's panicking? We'll just take everyone's word for it. I mean everything has gone according to plan so far, right?
Well, uh, no. But we won't panic.....yet.