abc
QUICK LINKS:

Duluth Institutes Tourism Tax to Help Project Funding

Updated: 07/14/2014 10:42 PM
Created: 07/14/2014 10:06 PM WDIO.com
By: Briggs LeSavage
blesavage@wdio.com

The Duluth City Council voted unanimously Monday night to institute a half of one percent increase on food and beverage and hotel-motel taxes in the city. 

This comes after the state legislature authorized the half percent increase earlier this year. The legislature also put $5 million toward improvements at Wade Stadium and Spirit Mountain in this year's bonding bill. 

"The City was very fortunate in this year's bonding bill from the state to get over $5 million  to help preserve and make improvements to Wade Stadium and also to allow Spirit Mountain to snow make with water from the St. Louis River, which will significantly reduce their operating costs," City Councilor Joel Sipress said. 

The additional funds gathered from this tax increase will be geared toward those same improvement projects. 

Under the new tax increase, a $100 dollar hotel room will cost 50 cents more and a $10 restaurant tab will cost five cents more. 

"The reason that we fund these sorts of projects out of this tourism tax is it’s a way to make sure people who visit the city help cover the cost of the things that we build for our visitors,' Sipress said.

He said the council recognizes that many Duluth residents are patrons of these businesses as well.

"Between the food and beverage tax and the hotel-motel tax, we do get a lot of money from people who come to our city to help pay for things that not only benefit visitors but things like Spirit Mountain and Wade Stadium that are very important to local residents," Sipress said.

Eyewitness News called around to about a dozen Duluth restaurants and hotels. While some general managers weren't available for comment by news times, Holiday Inn and Suites General Manager Gerry Goldfarb said he supports the tax increase.

"Anything we can do to attract new and exciting changes in West Duluth is good for all of Duluth," Goldfarb said.

Brain Daugherty, president of Grandma's Restaurant Company echoed those sentiments.

We do believe this is a good project, and we do support this ... It takes a lot of planning and prep work for us to support a tax increase," Daugherty said. 

Sipress said for now, these tax dollars can only be used to fund projects at Spirit Mountain and Wade Stadium. He said the council plans to have a committee of the whole meeting in the coming weeks to discuss funding for more improvements to the West Duluth area. 

Front Page

  • Woman Hospitalized after Armed Standoff with Deputies in Douglas County

    A 22-year-old Lake Nebagamon woman was hospitalized on Wednesday evening after an armed standoff with the Douglas County Sheriff's Office. 

  • City of Tower Starts Dredging on Multi-Million-Dollar Harbor Project

    The City of Tower is starting a new phase of an old dream. Back in June, WDIO's sister station KSTP reported that Tower's multi-million-dollar Harbor Renaissance Project hadn't gone anywhere in seven years. But Wednesday, the City said they're moving forward.

  • Minnesota Food Charter Launched at DECC

    Around five hundred people flocked to the DECC for the Minnesota Statewide Food Access Summit. One of the big events? The launch of the of the Minnesota Food Charter. Only four other states have a food charter, but Food Charter Steering Committee Chair Mindy Kurzer said number five is unique.

  • Bong Bridge to Reopen Friday

    The Duluth-bound lanes of the Richard I. Bong Bridge are expected to reopen Friday morning after a summer of construction.  Superior-bound lanes have remained open this year but will be closed next year.

  • TV Campaign Ads Make Wealth an Issue in Minn. Election

    It seems an hour doesn't go by without several television campaign ads criticizing a candidate for having millions of dollars or trying to line his or her pockets at government expense. Class warfare is nothing new in politics, but it certainly is more pronounced in Minnesota this year because of two Republican candidates: Stewart Mills and Mike McFadden. They've been the target of a barrage of attack ads aimed at their personal wealth and how they accumulated it.

 

Lake Effect Snow Advisory

WI AREAS AFFECTED: Iron
Expires: 10/31/2014 11:00 AM

Lake Effect Snow Advisory

MI AREAS AFFECTED: Gogebic; Houghton; Keweenaw; Ontonagon; Southern Houghton
Expires: 10/31/2014 12:00 PM

Lakeshore Flood Advisory

MI AREAS AFFECTED: Alger; Baraga; Gogebic; Houghton; Keweenaw; Marquette; Ontonagon
Expires: 10/31/2014 2:00 PM

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement