Missouri Governor Jay Nixon (D) says acting without the approval of the legislature to pay for a new NFL stadium in St. Louis is a possibility, but suggests it’s not the route he wants to take.
Republican lawmakers have expressed alarm this week at the Nixon Administration’s assessment that it could act without the legislature to extend the current bonds on the Rams’ stadium in St. Louis to pay at least part of the cost–as much as $350-million–of a new NFL stadium.
“Which I think is atrocious,” Representative Jay Barnes (R-Jefferson City) told Missourinet.
Governor Nixon told reporters Thursday that is a possibility.
“That could be one of the options, but clearly those aren’t things you just do without remaining in contact with folks and working your way through those issues,” Nixon said.
Nixon said he wants to keep other elected officials involved, “not only folks at the state level but also local folks … It’s important that we protect taxpayers but that we do what we can to remain an NFL city. I look forward to working with a lot of policy makers at a lot of levels to have a unified approach.”
Nixon added, “This is going to require a team effort for us to be competitive.”
One Senate Republican has proposed a law to require legislative approval on a bond extension of more than 50-million dollars, while others are seeking the Attorney General’s interpretation of whether the administration could extend bonds without lawmakers.
The leader of the House’s Republican supermajority, Speaker John Diehl, Junior, (R-Town and Country) in an interview with the St. Louis Post-Dispatch did not criticize the assessment that the administration could extend those bonds on its own. Diehl told the Dispatch it is a “hypothetical” scenario that didn’t merit a response.