Poll participants at state fair say no to special session for athletic stadium

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, September 7, 2005

For the Tribune

Nearly 70 percent of those participating in the 2005 House of Representatives State Fair Poll do not believe that a special session should be called this year to deal with stadium issues for the Minnesota Twins, Minnesota Vikings and/or the University of Minnesota.

During the 12-day run of the Minnesota State Fair, a total of 8,822 fairgoers took the poll conducted by the nonpartisan House Public Information Services Office. It is an informal, unscientific survey on a number of issues discussed in prior legislative sessions that may again be topics of discussion. There were four more ballots cast this year than in 2004.

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Results show that 81.1 percent of polltakers believe residents should have a say when a city or county wants to raise its local sales tax for whatever purpose.

The Hennepin County Board has proposed paying the county’s share of a new Twins ballpark on the edge of downtown Minneapolis through a countywide sales tax increase of 0.15 percent

without a voter referendum.

Voters also strongly support dedicated funding to clean up

polluted waters, believe that at least one-half the members in the House and Senate should be up for election every two years and most would be willing to pay a fee on electronics purchases to fund a statewide electronics recycling program.

Slightly more than half of voters generally support increasing the state’s gas tax to support road and bridge funding.

When it comes to gambling, an oft-discussed budget tool in the 2005 legislative session, 47.4 percent of voting fairgoers oppose the so-called “racino” at Canterbury Park and 44.8 percent support the plan.

More than 62 percent of voters oppose the idea of a state-run casino at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.

The majority of voters also believe that when no legal directive is provided, the state should not presume that a person wants a feeding tube inserted to sustain life; ticket scalping should not be legalized; and capital punishment should not be reinstated.

More than 63 percent of ballot casters believe co-curricular school activities should remain the responsibility of the school district, not local governments.