Compare and contrast DMC with Vikings stadium
This angle comes up a lot in discussions about Mayo's Destination Medical Center plan: How and why is it different from what was asked of Minnesota taxpayers for the Vikings stadium, or Twins or name your sports team?
There are differences. There are similarities. It's Sunday and I need to get ready for church, but in the meantime, here's an open letter from a reader and Sen. Dave Senjem's somewhat surprising answer. More to be written about this.
(Unedited notes...watch out for Lenczewski, for one typo.)
I came away from the PB Dialogue meeting on DMC wondering why no one from the City or County Council was on the panel beside the Mayor. Why was that? It just leads to the confusion as to who is requesting/gets the 500+ Million. Talking to a medical professional in the TC today she thought the money was going to Mayo. Certainly the City Council needs to be more visible and vocal if this project is to sail.
The other point that struck me after listening to the comments from Rep Lenczewskie was her comparison of DMC to the Vikings. Someone needs to call her out on that. It is apples and oranges. The Viking case took so long because it was controversial due to the fact the money was to build a facility for a private party who would profit from the venture. Public money for a private purpose. DMC is completely different in my view. It is public money for a public purpose. Mayo is non profit unlike the Vikings. And the state money requested is a small percent of what the state would get in return for the investment. That is not being made clear to the public. I know I am preaching to the choir but so far communication to the public that can be understood could be improved.
From Senator Senjem's newsletter: (My emphasis added)
MAYO DESTINATION MEDICAL CENTER (DMC)
The Mayo Clinic plans to spend $3.5 billion over 20 years to secure Mayo as a global destination for medical care. Included in the plan is an additional $2.1 billion in private investments for other parties. The City of Rochester is asking for state support by earmarking more than $500 million over 20 years in new tax revenue from Mayo’s growth for infrastructure projects.
Why are state funds needed and why can’t the City of Rochester fund infrastructure projects on their own is because the demand for infrastructure far outweighs the City of Rochester’s capacity to fund the need through normal Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) expenditures. Because Rochester is a mid-size city that supports a regional employment and visitation center, it simply not able to pay for the huge infrastructure cost need to accommodate Mayo’s growth plans
Thanks Lanny.....I agree 100 percent with you. A state senator cautioned me last week that this same wrong and harmful perception about the money going to Mayo is being portrayed by their lobbyists and exists significantly among legislators. I have tried to correct the misconception but I think the seed has already been planted and am not sure we can turn people around on this.