The two top leaders of the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority resigned Thursday, following reports that officials gave free Vikings stadium suite tickets to family and friends. When asked if the remaining board members should step down also, Governor Mark Dayton said, “Absolutely not. Totally uncalled for. And to those who keep trying to spread this thing farther and farther and are gonna keep beating on it because they see the political advantage to do so, and try to damage other people’s reputations, is just extremely irresponsible.” Republicans allege misconduct extended beyond those who resigned and want a full housecleaning at the agency that runs U-S Bank Stadium. Dayton says their blanket assertions are irresponsible unless based on clear factual evidence.
Dayton says the upcoming 2018 Super Bowl is a “very important” reason that leadership needs to be reconfigured promptly at the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority. He says, “I think we’ll do all that swiftly because it’s required to be swift, but it’s also gonna be done very thoughtfully.” Dayton says the Republican-controlled House is proposing “drastic changes” in the Sports Facilities Authority and they’ll have to “see if we can find some common ground.” Dayton says he’ll likely appoint an interim head of the agency and will work with lawmakers on what that person should be paid.
Excerpts from Dayton’s Thursday afternoon news conference: