as introduced - 83rd Legislature (2003 - 2004) Posted on 12/15/2009 12:00am
1.1 A bill for an act 1.2 relating to state government; providing a process for 1.3 community ownership of the Minnesota Twins; proposing 1.4 coding for new law as Minnesota Statutes, chapter 4B. 1.5 BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 1.6 Section 1. [4B.01] [PURPOSE.] 1.7 The legislature determines that: 1.8 (1) a professional baseball franchise is an important asset 1.9 to the state of Minnesota and ensuring that a franchise remains 1.10 in Minnesota is an important public purpose; 1.11 (2) providing community ownership of a professional 1.12 baseball franchise develops trust among fans, taxpayers, and the 1.13 team, and helps ensure this important asset will remain in the 1.14 state; 1.15 (3) providing community ownership of a professional 1.16 baseball franchise ensures that the financial benefits of any 1.17 increased value of the franchise will accrue to those who pay 1.18 the costs; and 1.19 (4) enacting legislation providing for community ownership 1.20 indicates to major league baseball continuing support for 1.21 professional baseball in Minnesota. 1.22 Sec. 2. [4B.02] [ACQUISITION.] 1.23 Subdivision 1. [AUTHORITY.] (a) The governor and the 1.24 Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission must attempt to 1.25 provide for community ownership of the Minnesota Twins. 2.1 (b) The governor and commission must attempt to work with 2.2 the Minnesota Twins and a community foundation or nonprofit 2.3 corporation to transfer by gift or sale to the foundation or 2.4 corporation all ownership interests in the Twins, voting and 2.5 nonvoting. The commission must ensure that there is a binding 2.6 agreement ensuring that the transfer complies with the terms of 2.7 subdivision 2. 2.8 (c) The governor and commission must work with a 2.9 professional baseball franchise and a community foundation to 2.10 develop a plan to offer shares of the franchise to the general 2.11 public as specified in subdivision 2. 2.12 Subd. 2. [CONDITIONS.] (a) The commission must ensure that 2.13 the conditions in clauses (1) to (6) are met in a transfer to 2.14 community ownership: 2.15 (1) within one year of transfer of the team from current 2.16 ownership to the community foundation or nonprofit corporation, 2.17 the foundation or corporation must offer the team for sale as 2.18 provided in clauses (2) to (6); 2.19 (2) there must be one class of shares known as class A 2.20 stock. Class A stock gives owners full voting rights. There 2.21 must be another class of shares known as class B stock. Class B 2.22 stock gives owners the right to vote only on relocation of the 2.23 franchise. Class B shares must not be marketed to pension 2.24 funds, or to individuals for the purpose of holding the shares 2.25 in individual retirement accounts or other retirement savings 2.26 accounts; 2.27 (3) a private managing partner must be selected and must 2.28 own no more than 25 percent of the class A stock of the 2.29 franchise. The private managing partner must be responsible for 2.30 operation of the franchise; 2.31 (4) other than the private managing partner, no individual 2.32 or entity may own more than five percent of the class A stock of 2.33 the franchise, and at least 50 percent of the ownership of the 2.34 class A stock of the franchise must be dispersed in a manner 2.35 such that no person or entity owns more than one percent of the 2.36 class A stock of the franchise; 3.1 (5) the articles of incorporation, or other organizing 3.2 charter or agreements, bylaws, and other governing documents 3.3 must provide that the franchise may not move outside of the 3.4 state without approval of 80 percent of the shares of class A 3.5 stock and 80 percent of the shares of class B stock. 3.6 Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, these 80 percent 3.7 approval requirements must not be amended by the shareholders or 3.8 by any other means; and 3.9 (6) within one year of transfer of ownership to the 3.10 foundation or nonprofit corporation, the commission must 3.11 determine if subscriptions for purchases of class A stock by the 3.12 public will be sufficient to purchase from the community 3.13 organization 75 percent of the shares of class A stock in the 3.14 team not owned by the managing partner. The community 3.15 foundation or nonprofit corporation must have the right to sell 3.16 its interest in the franchise if less than 75 percent of the 3.17 class A stock not held by the managing partner is not sold 3.18 within one year of the community foundation or nonprofit 3.19 corporation receiving an ownership interest in the franchise. 3.20 (b) For purposes of the percentage restrictions in 3.21 paragraph (a), clause (3), the shares owned by an individual or 3.22 entity include the shares owned by a related taxpayer as defined 3.23 in section 1313(c) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986. 3.24 Subd. 3. [PROHIBITION.] Except as outlined by this 3.25 section, no state agency may expend any money from any state 3.26 fund for the purpose of generating revenue under this section or 3.27 providing operating support or defraying operating losses of a 3.28 professional baseball franchise. 3.29 Sec. 3. [EFFECTIVE DATE.] 3.30 Sections 1 and 2 are effective the day following final 3.31 enactment.