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Signed contracts on Vikings stadium, detail on seat licenses, expected today

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The Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority and the Vikings will be sealing a 30-year partnership at the Metrodome this afternoon.

The authority and the team have hashed out the details on two main parts of the deal, a use agreement and development agreement. They'll detail the terms of the team's lease on the stadium, and construction planning. The MSFA is meeting at 5 p.m. today to formally approve the deals.

The Vikings have pledged to pay $477 million of the $975 million cost of construction, as well as $13 million a year in rent for the new stadium.

The Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority is offering $398 million in state bond proceeds: $150 million of that will be repaid by hospitality taxes in the city of Minneapolis, $348 million will be repaid by new state corporate taxes, backed up, if necessary, by a one-time cigarette tax.

The number to watch for out of today's meeting is the pricing plan for Stadium Builder Licenses, or SBLs.

They're actually personal seat licenses, the one-time seat fee that has been pledged by the state to help pay the Vikings share. The MSFA is handling the money in the sale, so it will reveal how much the team expects to raise and probably an average cost that fans can expect to pay for the licenses in the new stadium.

The MSFA is also expected to reveal how many seats will require licenses.

The NFL average for an overall seat license sale is more than $150 million per team, but Gov. Mark Dayton has been pushing back on that number lately. "I''d prefer it be zero," Gov. Mark Dayton said in a recent interview with MPR News.

He also said he wants most of the stadium's seats to not be licensed. The MSFA is expected to reveal how that negotiation worked out when it approves the stadium deal today.

If all goes as planned, the Vikings are expected to close on the bank financing for their part of the deal some time around Nov. 1, and the groundbreaking for the new stadium could happen within days. The state is accepting proposals to handle its bond sale through Oct. 9, and will probably start selling at least some of the bonds it needs later this year.