Hermantown’s City Council wants schedule a vote in November asking residents whether or not to increase the sales tax by 0.5 percent.
If approved, the additional money would fund an array of community recreation initiatives including additions to the current Hermantown Hockey Arena to support an additional sheet of indoor ice, improved outdoor rinks and reconfiguring and adding turf to Fichtner Field. Further, the city said, more paths and trails are needed to connect key components of Hermantown and extended to meet trail systems beyond the city’s borders.
Hermantown must receive state legislative approval to have the question added to the ballot in November.
A draft of an Economic Impact Study, performed by the University of Minnesota-Duluth’s Bureau of Business and Economic Research, showed a positive economic impact for the region’s overall economy regarding the hockey arena portion of the three-pronged project solely. The remaining two
projects have not had similar assessments performed regarding their expected economic impact for Hermantown or the greater region.
If approved, the half-percent increase in sales tax would generate
an expected $1.5 million annually. The projected annual debt service for the three projects would be $1.4 million. The total cost to all three portions of the project would be $28 million.