Vikings stadium discussion likely to extend beyond Monday's deadline
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The official deadline for a Minnesota Vikings stadium to get done always was Monday, the final day of the state legislative session.
Privately, there has been optimism within the organization the best chance to get a deal done might come later in a special session -- which is precisely where the Legislature appears headed because of an unresolved $5 billion budget deficit.
Gov. Mark Dayton and Republican legislative leaders remain about $1.8 billion apart, The Associated Press reported on Sunday, and a special session would be needed to avoid a government shutdown in July if that gap isn't closed by midnight Monday.
Though the budget remains the primary issue, the time needed to resolve it also would provide opportunities to produce a stadium agreement that could be voted on quickly after the final budget agreement is passed.
The Vikings and Ramsey County announced a partnership on May 10 to provide more than 70% of the financing toward a stadium on the site of the abandoned munitions plant in Arden Hills.
However, the agreement is contingent on state legislators agreeing to contribute $300 million. And an estimated $131 million in off-site transportation upgrades not included in the project's $1.057 billion price tag remain a sticking point with Dayton, who has said the state won't pay a penny over $300 million.
The Vikings have said discussions are continuing with legislators and department of transportation officials about who would pay for those transportation updates.