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Lawmaker: Vikings stadium bill could come as early as today

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ST. PAUL -- Minnesota legislators will introduce a bill to build a new Vikings football stadium soon.

Rep. Morrie Lanning, R-Moorhead, said on Tuesday the bill will surface this week, perhaps as early as Wednesday.

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Lanning has worked on the bill with Sen. Julie Rosen, R-Fairmont. It was expected to be introduced early in the year, but the lawmakers needed more time to work out something that could pass.

The Moorhead lawmaker would not hint about how the bill would finance a stadium.

While Lanning and Rosen were finishing their bill, Gov. Mark Dayton Tuesday encouraged lawmakers to approve a stadium.

"Several thousand would be put to work building the people's stadium," Dayton said.

The Democratic governor said stadium construction workers would have jobs for three years.

"Putting people back to work is the ultimate solution to these economic problems," he said, defending building a stadium during tough fiscal times.

With workers paying taxes to the state, a stadium would help state finances, he said.

The Vikings' Metrodome lease runs out after next season and team owners say they do not plan to renew it.

Don Davis reports for Forum Communications Co.

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