For Immediate Release – November 9, 2022
Community Recreation Initiative Fully Approved in Hermantown
LeBlanc and Hjelle elected to City Council
Hermantown, Minn. – Hermantown voters approved all three components of Hermantown’s Community Recreation Initiative by significant margins as part of Tuesday’s General Election.
Both the Hermantown Connector Trail System and the reimagining of Fichtner Park received better than two-thirds of support among voters. Meanwhile, 56.7% of ballots cast favored adding an additional indoor sheet of ice in Hermantown.
The projects will be funded through a half-percent increase to Hermantown’s local option sales tax. The increase will move Hermantown’s sales tax to 8.875%, which will now be the same as neighboring Duluth. The change is set to occur on April 1, 2023, following several process steps by the City of Hermantown and communication to local businesses by the State of Minnesota.
“I’m grateful to the voters of Hermantown for their choice to support the Recreation Initiative ballot questions,” said Mayor Wayne Boucher. “These three projects, when completed, will be landmark contributions to the quality of life in our community.”
Two new city council members were also elected in Hermantown Tuesday. Brian LeBlanc garnered 2,234 votes, and Andy Hjelle received 1,805 votes to claim the two open seats. Incumbent Gloria Nelson chose not to run in this election, and Natalie Peterson recently resigned from the council as part of her move out of the City. Chad Roberg finished third with 1,653 votes, and Gerald Wallace earned 978 votes.
“It is an important and exciting time in Hermantown, especially with the full passing of the Recreation Initiative,” said Hermantown City Administrator John Mulder. “We look forward to working with our new councilors and know their thoughts and ideas will be great additions.”
Current Hermantown city councilor Grant Hauschild was also successful in his run for the Minnesota Senate Tuesday, which will create an opening on Hermantown’s City Council in early 2023. The process for filling Hauschild’s city council seat has not yet been set.
Full election results can be found on the Minnesota Secretary of State’s website.
For more information, contact: Joe Wicklund, Communications & Community Engagement Director, City of Hermantown, at [email protected] or 218.729.3614.