With the beginning of the 2012 Minnesota legislative session kicking off on Tuesday, and with Governor Dayton having given a press conference about the stadium situation that left us with more questions than answers, one might wonder whether or not the stadium issue is going to get resolved at all. However, it sounds as though the state might have found the best way to put together their share of the financing package with the implementation of the "electronic pull tab."
Pull tabs, at the present time, are little pieces of cardboard that you can purchase at bars and other establishments. They are sold for anywhere from twenty-five cents to two dollars, in most places, and the prizes can be as high as one thousand dollars. The current discussion is to expand those pull tabs to electronic devices such as iPads and things of that nature. This is something that, proponents say, could raise as much as $60 million for Minnesota.
As this article from the Star-Tribune points out, this would potentially be the easiest way to expand gambling in Minnesota, which is seen as one of the few options that raising money for a Vikings' stadium would take place. The reason that it's the easiest way is that the ultra-powerful Indian gaming lobby in Minnesota is not opposed to it the way they are to a potential Racino or any other potential form of gambling expansion.
This does seem to be the path of least resistance for the state to raise funds for a new Vikings' stadium. While it doesn't look like any plan will be in place at the start of the upcoming legislative session, hopefully something like this can get hammered out before the session ends. If it doesn't. . .
Well, we'll cross that bridge when we come to it. Or jump off of it. You know, whichever.