|The Vikings stadium bill passed the House and now is on its way to the Senate. (Getty Images)|
The Vikings stadium bill has passed the Minnesota House of Representatives by a vote of 73-58 and is headed for a vote in the Senate, perhaps as early as Tuesday, multiple outlets are reporting.
After eight hours of debate Monday, the bill to construct a new stadium passed with more support than originally expected, and now the $975 million proposal would keep the Vikings in Minnesota with the construction of the new stadium near the current site of the Metrodome.
Discussion on the House floor was occasionally interrupted by Vikings supporters who had gathered in the rotunda outside the Capitol. The Associated Press reports that Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton along with Vikings players energized fans, many of whom were chanting, "Build it." And second-year quarterback Christian Ponder drew cheers when he said "I want to be here in Minnesota for the rest of my life."
Now, after days of uncertainty, Ponder may get that opportunity.
“Quite simply, the Metrodome will not meet the needs of Minnesota for the next 40 or 50 years,” Republican Rep. Morrie Lanning, the chief sponsor of the proposal, said ahead of the debate according to PoliticsinMinnesota.com. “The time has come for Minnesota to make a decision.”
More details via the AP: The governor, key lawmakers and the Minneapolis mayor helped craft the plan that will have the Vikings covering roughly $427 million of the construction costs. The state of Minnesota would be on the hook for $398 million, with the money coming from the expansion of gambling. The city of Minneapolis, meanwhile, would pay $150 by redirecting an existing hospitality tax.
While clearing the House is a good start, there is still much work to be done.
"The bill now faces what is likely to be a tougher vote in the Minnesota Senate, where political observers says the right-wing contingent in the caucus is more organized and openly hostile toward the stadium proposal," PoliticsinMinnesota.com's Briana Bierschbach wrote late Monday night. "If the bill succeeds in the upper chamber, it will then head to a conference committee to work out differences between the House and Senate proposals."
For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, and subscribe to our Pick-6 Podcast and NFL newsletter. You can follow Ryan Wilson on Twitter here: @ryanwilson_07.