Mayor Dr. Tim Mahoney: "Time to go back to the drawing board" on FARGODOME, convention center project

(Fargo, ND) – Fargo Mayor Dr. Tim Mahoney says it’s time to “go back to the drawing board” to determine the next steps after the vote to raise city sales tax and the lodging tax to renovate the FARGODOME and add a convention center.

“We got a majority vote, but we just didn’t get enough and I think we need to have more people out there,” Mahoney told The Flag’s Scott Hennen on the What’s On Your Mind radio program Wednesday morning. “So I have to go back to the drawing board and see what people want to do.”

He says many people City staff spoke to agreed with the fact that the FARGODOME needs to be remodeled and redone – but there are some major differences from when the dome was built in 1987.

“We have some more taxes that we had to do for flood protection,” Mahoney said. “I feel sometimes people are a little tired of taxes.”

The mayor says he’s disappointed in the lower turnout. The last special election saw 15,000 voters, while Tuesday’s election had less than 8,000.

“What concerns me is that our community now is 132,000 people. Fargo’s a big city,” he said. “And when you’re having, you know, less than 10 percent or even lower vote on any type of city election, I would think a lot of people who are interested in their community get out and vote.”

Mahoney said the city will move forward on certain aspects of the project.

“We’ll have to do some things for disability issues that we have with the dome,” he said. “We’re not up to current code that has to do with that.”

Mahoney said the City will work with the FARGODOME Authority to re-examine the project.

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