Updated: 05/05/2013 7:24 PM KSTP.com By: Nick Winkler
Hotel owners oppose a subsidized 1,000 room convention center hotel because they believe it will hurt their business. But advocates say a new hotel would draw more convention and event business downtown and help Minneapolis better compete with cities like Denver, San Antonio, and Austin.
The problem is that an estimated $304 million convention center hotel may need a $125 million subsidy.
Existing hotel owners say subsidizing a new hotel would not be fair and would use tax dollars to take away business they currently enjoy. They say it would also decrease room rates.
The matter may also become a campaign issue and impact the mayoral race in Minneapolis.
Three of the candidates for mayor are sitting city council members and would have a vote regarding a hotel subsidy should it come to that.