Updated: 09/18/2013 1:47 PM KSTP.com By: Jennie Olson
Photo: KSTP File Photo
The electronic betting games introduced a year ago to help pay the state's share of construction of the new Minnesota Vikings stadium did not end up raising any money for the project.
New figures from the state confirm what has been obvious to policymakers for months. While players spent $15 million in the last few years on the electronic pull-tab and bingo games, 85 percent of that was returned as prizes while the remaining $2 million was divided among charity expenses, donations and taxes. That's nowhere near the originally projected $35 million, of which a large portion was to go to the stadium.
The new stadium could see gambling money, but that's because of a spike in sales of traditional paper pull-tabs. They generated $1 billion in sales during the last fiscal year, which is a five year-high.
Lawmakers passed alternative stadium funding earlier this year in the form of new corporate taxes, as they watched sales of the electronic struggle. Gov. Mark Dayton has apologized for pushing electronic gambling as a stadium funding source, calling it an "honest mistake."
See the breakdown of numbers here:
The Associated Press contributed to this article.