Report: Taxpayers funded $32K worth of food in stadium suite

Published 7:14 am Wednesday, January 11, 2017

By Rochelle Olson

Minneapolis Star Tribune

The food served up to guests in two state-owned luxury suites at U.S. Bank Stadium cost taxpayers $32,120, according to a letter sent by the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority (MSFA) to three GOP legislators who are investigating use of two suites. Many suite guests were friends and family of MSFA members.

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House Government Finance Committee Chairwoman Sarah Anderson, R-Plymouth, said Tuesday she will seek reimbursement for the food cost when her committee delves into the MSFA operation and use of the suites.

Anderson commented on a 27-page document sent by the MSFA in response to questions last month from her, Senate Finance Chairwoman Julie Rosen, R-Vernon Center, and Sen. Mary Kiffmeyer, R-Big Lake.

Anderson and Rosen, who was a sponsor of the 2012 legislation that got the stadium built with nearly $500 million in public money, say they will lead Republican efforts to examine the MSFA’s operations this session.

In response to lawmakers’ questions, the MSFA revealed a few new details, including the cost of the food, who got free parking passes and an acknowledgment that there was a quorum of commissioners at one Vikings game, but that it wasn’t illegal.