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City of Kasson offers to send property tax money from Mayo back to Mayo

As the Legislature struggles with the Mayo clinic’s big request for state money, tiny Kasson wants to help out.

As the Legislature struggles with a request from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester for a giant state subsidy to help its expansion, the tiny city of Kasson, pop. 5,978, is stepping up to the plate.

There is a Mayo Family Clinic in Kasson that pays property taxes to the city, but a TIF district allows the city to use the money for infrastructure to support the facility, says the Rochester Post-Bulletin.

The Kasson City Council passed a resolution this week saying it’s willing to send that money — $700,000 over 20 years — back to Rochester to support the big Mayo Clinic Destination Medical Center proposal.

The DMC envisions a multi-billion dollar expansion of clinic facilities in Rochester, and the clinic asked the state for $585 million to pay for roads, parking and other infrastructure needed for the expansion. Legislators have balked, and the clinic is looking at other options now, including asking local governments in the area for contributions.

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The Legislature would have to approve the Kasson plan to redirect its TIF funds. And the city says it’s asking the county and school district, which also get property tax money from the local clinic, to join in the effort.

One Kasson council member, Lori Hopkins, wasn’t happy with the proposal, though, the paper said:

“I understand coercion,” she said, referring to Mayo Clinic CEO John Noseworthy’s remark to a Star Tribune reporter that 49 states would gladly host Mayo’s multimillion-dollar expansion if Minnesota doesn’t approve the DMC proposal.