Duluth City Council

Duluth Council Approves DEDA Reserve for Kozy Fix-Up, Funding Request for Lasting Warming/Hygiene Facility

A resolution calling for part of Duluth's CARES Act money for the multi-year warming center/hygiene facility, and one for DEDA's money in case a court orders action on the Kozy.

DULUTH, Minn.- On Monday the Duluth City Council unanimously passed two resolutions involving federal funding for a multi-year warming shelter and hygiene facility, and DEDA funding in case a court asks the city to work on the run-down Kozy Bar and Apartments Building. All councilors approved a resolution from Councilors Roz Randorf and Vice President Renee Van Nett calling for…

Council to Vote Monday on Funding for Kozy, Federal Funding for Permanent Warming, Hygiene Center

Resolutions call for money set aside for the Pastoret Terrace, and for CARES Act funding to be used for the city's first permanent warming and hygiene center.

DULUTH, Minn.- Two big issues will be brought to Duluth City Council Monday night — DEDA’s proposal to set aside funding for maintenance of the condemned Kozy Bar and Apartment Building, and a resolution for a permanent warming shelter and hygiene facility for Duluth’s homeless. The issue surrounding the historic Pastoret Terrace on East First Street, better known as the…

Duluth Council Unanimously Votes to Wash Out Lakewalk Extension Plans

The resolution calls to reallocate FEMA funds to repair the storm damaged shorelines at Brighton Beach and the Marten Trail. 

DULUTH, Minn.- Duluth City Council unanimously passed a resolution Monday to leave a missing part of the Duluth’s Lakewalk trail disconnected after storms severely eroded the shoreline in 2018. The resolution calls for the indefinite closure of the shoreline trails behind the Ledges Townhomes on 21st Ave. East, and indefinitely halting construction of a new footpath from the Beacon Pointe…

Duluth Council to Vote Monday on Leaving Lakewalk’s Missing Link Disconnected

Councilors say the shoreline behind the Ledges and Beacon Pointe is too washed out to try and make changes.

DULUTH, Minn.- Duluth City Council is expected to vote on whether to scrap plans to connect a missing link to the popular Lakewalk behind some shoreline properties. At their last meeting two weeks ago, the council tabled the resolution that would reallocate $915,695 in FEMA funds. Those funds were granted to repair the 2018 storm-damaged trail behind the Ledges Townhomes…

Council Approves Funds to Re-Open Spirit Mountain This Winter, Tables Lakewalk Extension Talks

The Duluth City Council voted unanimously to fork over $300,000 to Spirit Mountain to help it re-open this coming winter, and tabled a resolution which would cancel work on the Lakewalk by Beacon Pointe.

DULUTH, Minn.- The Duluth City Council voted unanimously to fork over $300,000 to Spirit Mountain to help it re-open this coming winter. Council also tabled another resolution Monday night which proposed leaving some homes and condominiums along the lake disconnected from the main Lakewalk. The $300,000 to Spirit Mountain is to reimburse most of the $340,000 the Mountain spent on…

Duluth City Council to Vote On Proposal Monday to Fund Spirit Mountain Through Winter

The proposal would call for $340,000 from the half-and-half tourism tax to reimburse Spirit Mountain for money they spent on their lift system, snow-making equipment and alpine coaster over 2018, 2019, and 2020.

DULUTH, Minn.- Spirit Mountain could see life this coming winter, if Duluth City Council approves a new proposal to use money from the city’s half-and-half tourism tax to cover operation costs. Heard at an agenda session Thursday, the proposal would call for $340,000 from the half-and-half tourism tax to reimburse Spirit Mountain for money they spent on their lift system,…

Duluth Becomes First City in Northland to Approve Mask Mandate for Indoor Public Places

Duluth City Council voted unanimously to require masks indoors in public, with penalties for businesses and individuals that don't comply.

DULUTH, Minn.- Duluth is now the first city in the Northland to require masks in all public indoor spaces to stop the spread of the Coronavirus, after City Council voted unanimously to pass the historic ordinance Monday night, effective immediately. Face coverings will now be required in such places as retail spaces, DTA buses, the Skywalk, and in apartment building…

Duluth City Council Unanimously Passes Ordinance Requiring Masks Indoors Citywide

DULUTH, Minn.- The Duluth City Council has unanimously passed a resolution requiring masks in indoor public places in the city, effective immediately, to slow the spread of COVID-19. Face coverings will now be required in such places as retail spaces, DTA buses, the Skywalk, at restaurants and bars when not eating or drinking, and in apartment building common areas such…

Local Musician, Disability Rights Advocate Writes to Duluth Council in Favor of Mask Mandate

Gaelynn Lea says she feels requiring masks indoors is a logical first step for Duluth.

DULUTH, Minn.- A local musician and outspoken advocate for people with disabilities is voicing her support of the City Council approving a mask-mandate in public buildings. Gaelynn Lea recently wrote to Mayor Emily Larson and also the City Council urging them to require mask-wearing in the city. She said people who don’t wear a mask in public create a serious…

Duluth Council Approves Spirit Mountain Summer Closure; Extra $350K Still Needed for Winter Reopening

The adventure park's financial request comes while the city is facing a potential $38 million budget shortfall.

DULUTH, Minn.- The Duluth City Council unanimously passed Spirit Mountain’s annual multi-million dollar budget Tuesday evening, which is also calling for extra funding later this year to get the park reopened for the winter season after being shut down for the rest of the summer. Councilors just approved the adventure park’s $4 million operating budget for the 2020-2021 season, but…

Duluth Council, Mayor’s Administration Discuss Budget Shortfall, Layoffs

City Council shared their thoughts and questions while the Mayor and her team outlined plans.

DULUTH, Minn.- Mayor Emily Larson made a rare appearance at Duluth’s virtual City Council meeting to give councilors a detailed outline, and uncertain look towards a grim future after she announced the city’s budget shortfall–which was unveiled to now be about $20.7-$38.2 million. According to city officials, due to the city’s “strong mayor system,” Larson can make any decisions she…

Keene Creek Park Improvements Presented to the Public

An informational meeting was held to discuss the improvements and upgrades to the park.

DULUTH, Minn.- One of Duluth’s most popular Dog and Recreation Parks is getting some big upgrades this year. We’re talking about Keene Creek Park near Grand Avenue in West Duluth. Planned changes include accessibility upgrades, a new playground, dog park improvements, trail resurfacing, and a new bicycle pumping rack. In 2016 the City Council approved the Keene Creek Mini Master…

Council Unanimously Approves New Police Protective Gear Policy

Councilors praised the policy as a great product of a lot of hard work.

DULUTH, Minn.- The Duluth City Council unanimously approved a new policy for the use of newly purchased protective gear by the Duluth Police Department. This effectively puts an end to public discussions on the policy, which began back in 2017 when Police Chief Mike Tusken proposed purchasing the gear to replace outdated ones. Many councilors spoke on their reasons for…

Council Approves Demolition of Kozy; Former Owner Still Determined to Stop Wrecking Ball

Former owner Eric Ringsred didn't come up with the $50,000 bond court required to keep building up.

DULUTH, Minn.- The City of Duluth is the closest its ever been to tearing down the condemned Kozy building on East First Street. DEDA owns the building, and the Council voted to approve DEDA’s decision to demolish the building that’s sat vacant for nearly a decade. The council voted unanimously, 8-0 with Councilor Russ absent, to demolish the structure. But…

Officials Present New Protective Gear Policy with Police Chief, Community

Policy born out of nearly one year of meetings, and over 30 hours of discussion.

DULUTH, Minn.- After 10 months of 12 meetings, the Duluth Police Policy Working Group presented its Protective Gear Policy to Duluth Police Chief Mike Tusken, with the public having the chance to share their questions and concerns. The Policy Working Group consisted of 20 members from groups including the Duluth Citizen Review Board, Duluth NAACP, Homeless Persons Bill of Rights,…

Duluth City Councilors, Mayor Emily Larson Officially Sworn In

Three fresh faces to the council gave their remarks.

DULUTH, Minn.- Duluth’s newly elected City Councilors, and twice-elected Mayor Emily Larson were officially sworn in at the DECC Monday. All eyes were particularly on the three fresh new faces joining the council: Derek Medved, Janet Kennedy, and Roz Randorf. After songs from the Duluth Denfeld Maroon 16 Choir, Duluth’s new councilors took the oath and were sworn in. “…I…

Rally Calls for Council Support to Pass Ban on Conversion Therapy

Council voted 8-0 with Councilor Jay Fosle opposed.

DULUTH, Minn.- Activists, city leaders, and other members of the LGBTQ Community gathered on the ground floor of City Hall for a rally asking the City Council to vote yes on a ban on Conversion Therapy. The council passed the ban 8-0, with Councilor Jay Fosle absent. “Will encourage our state legislature to pass a statewide ban in 2020,” said…

Duluth Council Approves $235 Thousand to Spirit Mountain

Councilors voice disappointment that resort is in this state.

DULUTH, Minn.- The fate of Spirit Mountain rested in the hands of the Duluth City Council, who voted to grant $235,000 to the resort, to make up for losses after a Thanksgiving blizzard cancelled this past Amsoil Snocross. While the council approved the resolution 8-1 with Jay Fosle opposed, it was not without a tone of disappointment that the resort…

Duluth Council Tables Plastic Bag Ordinance Again to Hear from Dept. of Revenue

Some councilors want questions about taxability to be answered, others say it's time to vote.

DULUTH, Minn.- The Duluth City Council has once again tabled a plastic bag ordinance that would require businesses to charge customers five center per single-use bag. This time, councilors want to hear back from the Minnesota Department of Revenue, to find out whether or not the fee would need to be taxed. The bag fee has been in front of…

Janet Kennedy Becomes First African American Council Member

History was made Tuesday night during the Duluth Election

DULUTH, Minn.- Tuesday night, history was made as Janet Kennedy became the first African American to be elected to the Duluth City Council. The third time was the charm for Kennedy as she had run for the District 5 seat the past two elections. Kennedy tells us, she hopes last night’s win serves as an example for young people. “As…

Anderson, Randorf, Kennedy Elected to Duluth City Council

Districts 3 & 5 get new councilors, District 1 gets incumbent Anderson.

DULUTH, Minn.- On election night, Gary Anderson was voted First District City Councilor, while Roz Randorf was voted Third District, and Janet Kennedy voted Fifth District Councilors. Anderson won 3,630 votes to Becky Hall’s 2,349. Randorf won 1,637 to Theresa O’Halloran Johnson’s 1,356. Kennedy won 2,125 to Jeanne Koneczny’s 1,930 votes. Anderson has been Councilor for the First District for…

Duluth Council Tables Vote on Five Cent Bag Ordinance

Councilors site unanswered questions in reason to table.

DULUTH, Minn.- The proposed fee on plastic and paper bags in the City of Duluth has been postponed, as the City Council voted to table the ordinance to allow further discussion. The ordinance would apply to all retail establishments, excluding bags used to transport take-out food, bags from pharmacists and bags for produce and meats. Retailers would keep the five…

Costco Submits Application to Develop in Duluth

The site would include the department store, gas station, and liquor store at Haines Road and West Arrowhead Road

DULUTH, Minn.- A city spokesperson has confirmed to Fox 21 that Costco has submitted an application with the city to develop in Duluth. The plan would call for a store to be developed at the Haines Road and West Arrowhead Road intersection on a site of about 60 acres. The land borders between Duluth and Hermantown. The site would include…

Duluth Council Packed for 5-Cent Charge Ordinance for Single-Use Bags

Dozens speak in support of the ordinance, no one speaks against.

DULUTH, Minn.- A potential new ordinance in Duluth could mean that for every paper or plastic bag you use from a store, you’re charged an extra five cents. The proposal is got its first read at Monday night’s City Council meeting, with residents sharing how they feel about it during public comments. They could vote on the ordinance at their…

Council Reads Ordinance Charging 5 Cents Per Single-Use Bags

Ordinance is an effort to phase out single-use paper or plastic bags in the City.

DULUTH, Minn.- Duluthians are one step closer to being charged five cents for every single-use plastic or paper carryout bag used while shopping. The ordinance gets its first read at City Council Monday night. It would apply to all retail establishments, excluding bags used to transport take-out food, bags from pharmacists, and bags for produce and meats. The retailers would keep…

Council Passes Amended Golf Course Resolution, Step Closer to Calling for Development Proposals

Council voted 8-0, with amendment that new property must meet certain requirements.

DULUTH, Minn.- The Duluth City Council voted to pass a resolution that allows the potential sale of 50 acres of Lester Park Golf Course and 10 acres of Enger Park Golf Course to a developer to use for affordable housing. The council passed the resolution 8-0, with Councilor Jay Fosley absent. It comes with an amendment that any proposals for…

Future Of Clean And Safe Team In Property Owners Hands

City Council wants property owners to continue paying a combined total of $400,000 annually, with another $220,000 coming from the city

DULUTH, Minn.- In the coming weeks, the future of the Duluth’s Clean and Safe Team which works to beautify the downtown area will be decided by the City Council. Right now the council is looking at asking property owners in that area to continue paying a combined total of $400,000 annually, with another $220,000 coming from the city. They are…

Council Candidates Door-Knock Ahead of Primaries

Volunteers take to the doors in their district to talk to voters.

DULUTH, Minn.- The Duluth primary elections are less than a month away on August 13th. Early voting has been open since June 28th, so some city council candidates and volunteers took advantage of the cool summer evening to get out and knock on some doors. Volunteers met at the Labor Temple to discuss strategy, scripts and plot which neighborhoods to…

Duluth City Council Approves Changes to Minnesota Power Building

Duluth City Council Approved Monday Night's Vote for Renovations to the Minnesota Power Building

DULUTH, Minn. – The Minnesota Power building in downtown Duluth hasn’t changed much since 1970’s, but company leaders are hoping the Duluth City Council helps clear the way for some renovations by letting them close the entrance to their building from the sky walk. The vote Monday night was approved unanimously, with councilor Arik Forsman abstaining. The main goal includes…

Lakeside Neighborhood’s First Liquor Store Opens

DULUTH, Minn. – It’s something the Duluth Lakeside neighborhood has never seen before — a liquor store now open for business. The Lakeside neighborhood has prohibited alcohol sales since the late 1800s until the Duluth City Council officially legalized those sales in 2016. Permits for two Lakeside liquor stores were approved in 2018 and as of Wednesday, Lakeside Liquors is…

Proposed Plans for Duluth Golf Courses Pass to City Council

Plans propose scaling back and developing Lester Park Golf Course.

DULUTH, Minn.- Duluth Public Golf Courses are now $2.4 million in debt. The city’s recommendations, which the Parks and Recreation Commission passed with a 6-2 vote on Wednesday, would scale back the 27 holes at Lester Park Golf Course to 18 to make way for housing. Plans would also improve the infrastructure at Enger Park Golf Course. Among the proposed…

Future of Duluth Golf Courses

The City of Duluth is recommending one Duluth golf course will be downsized

DULUTH, Minn.- The City of Duluth is recommending nine holes of the Lester Park Golf Course be sold off following the 2019 season for a housing development that could be turned into up to 400 multi-family housing units. The City’s recommendation would improve the infrastructure at Enger Park Golf Course while continuing to operate the other 18 holes at Lester…

Ordinance To Restrict Duluth Massage Businesses Gets First Read

Some are in favor of some new city regulations, but say current proposal hurts their legitimate businesses.

DULUTH, Minn.- The Duluth City Council had its first read of an ordinance that would tighten up restrictions for massage businesses. Amendments to the ordinance include broadening hours of operations from 6 am to 11 pm, allowing clients to enter or exit through more than one entrance, and allowing doors to be locked during business hours. Previously, the ordinance stated…

First Street to be Evaluated for Two-Way Traffic

City proposes traffic study to city council Monday night.

DULUTH, Minn.- As the city starts work on the reconstruction of Superior Street, they’re also looking ahead to a possible redevelopment of First Street. On Monday night the Duluth City Council is expected to vote on whether to have a traffic study done. The study would look into converting First Street between Mesaba Avenue and 24th Avenue East from one-way…

Theresa O’Halloran-Johnson Running for Duluth City Council

Johnson announcing she's running for the 3rd District.

DULUTH, Minn.- Duluth resident and activist Theresa O’Halloran-Johnson announced she’s running for Duluth City Council, in the third district. A resident of more than 10 years, Johnson said she knows the neighborhood and its issues, and will try to be as accessible as she can be to residents. “I wanted to make sure that we had a strong voice for…

Duluth Councilors Pass Ordinance To Help Ease Child-Care Shortage

DULUTH, Minn. – It’s estimated at least 1,100 more child-care spots are needed in Duluth to meet the demand right now, according to the Northland Foundation.  But Monday night, city councilors voted to help ease that shortage. Councilors passed an ordinance with an 8-0 vote that allows companies and other mixed-use businesses to have a child-care facility on site. Councilor Jay…

Convenience Stores Find Loophole to Sell Flavored Tobacco

Korner Store in Gary New Duluth opening up smoke shop.

DULUTH, Minn.- At least two convenience stores in Duluth have found a way around a year-old city ordinance that bans the sale of menthol and flavored tobacco products. Derek Medved, owner of the Korner Store in Gary New Duluth, is creating a separate retail establishment as a smoke shop within his convenience store. The 10 foot by 10 foot section…

City Council Approves St. Luke’s Helipad Move

Old parking lot being turned into new helipad.

DULUTH, Minn.- The Duluth City Council has approved the move of Saint Luke’s helipad as the hospital continues to look to expand. Citizens had previously expressed concern about the noise caused by the new location. The resolution also approves the hospitals plans for the reconstruction of its parking deck, including an ambulance garage on East Second Street, where the new helipad would…

Duluth Council OKs $88K For External Review Of Police Dept.

DULUTH, Minn.- City councilors have unanimously approved Duluth Police Chief Mike Tusken’s request to purchase an external evaluation of his department at a cost of roughly $88,000. The funds would come from the department’s already-approved operational budget for 2019. The assessment would be performed by a third party, and police say it would help them better allocate their limited resources…

Gary Anderson To Run for Second Term on Council

Current first district councilor announces he'll run for second term

DULUTH, Minn.- To cheers from his supporters at Vanilla Bean in Duluth, First District City Councilor Gary Anderson announced he will be running for council for a second 4-year-term. Anderson is currently the Vice President of the council. During his term has helped craft and vote on the Earn Sick and Safe Time Ordinance and changing the age to buy…

Goodbye 18, Hello 21. Duluth’s Legal Age To Purchase Tobacco Products Rises

Ordinance Will Take Effect In 120 Days

DULUTH, Minn.- In a 6-2 vote Monday night, the Duluth city council voted in favor of raising the legal age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21. “I know people will say this is a complex issue. But the lives of our children–is simple,” said Tonya Sconier, principal at Denfeld High School, before the vote was made. About a…

Council Passes TIF Agreement for High Rise Apartments in Downtown Duluth

2 Councilors Vote Against, One Absent

DULUTH, Minn.- Duluth City Council passed a TIF increment financing package for developers, who plan to build a luxury apartment complex downtown. $6.2 million of the $70.4 million cost will come through public financing. A packed city hall Monday night illustrates the urgency presented by this issue. The developers for the high rise presented their plans for the construction. The…

City Council Approves New Budget

Budget for Fiscal Year 2019 Goes Up, Minimal Cuts

DULUTH, Minn.- The Duluth City Council approved a new budget for the city Monday night. The budget is expected to be $3 million bigger than 2018’s. Councilors said the amount of cuts in this budget are minimal at best. Changes include adding $280,000 for park maintenance. At the council meeting they also had the first reading of an amendment that…

City Council Approves Riot Gear As Protesters Take Over Chambers

Disruptions Don't Stop Approval of Riot Gear Purchase

DULUTH, Minn.- After two tabled votes, and three community meetings involving the topic, the Duluth City Council voted 6 to 2 in favor of purchasing roughly $83,000 of riot gear for Police Officers. Counselors Gary Anderson and Joel Sipress voted against the purchase. Em Westerlund was out of town for work. Westerlund missed a city council meeting like no other….

Community Voices Heard One Last Time for Riot Gear

Issue with Comments from Meetings Now Goes to City Council

DULUTH, Minn.- “…we stop being oppositional and look for ways to make our community safe.” The tired plea from one concerned citizen at a third community meeting discussing whether the Duluth Police Department should purchase new riot gear. The Citizens Review Board held its final community meeting about the proposed purchase of riot gear. The feedback along the way will…

Businesses Feel Impact of Flavored Tobacco Ordinance

The ordinance on flavored tobacco products has been in effect since June 12, four months after the council passed it.

DULUTH, Minn. – The city of Duluth has now restricted the sales of flavored tobacco products at some businesses for more than two months. It’s an ordinance that went into effect 120 days after the city voted to ban those products from grocery and convenience stores, limiting them to be sold at adult–only smoke shops. It’s business as usual at…

Montgomery Announces Retirement

Longtime Chief Administration Officer Bids Adieu

Duluth, Minn- A big change is coming to the Mayor’s office in Duluth. After nearly ten years in his position, Chief Administration Officer Dave Montgomery is retiring. Montgomery is the longest serving Chief Administrative Officer in Duluth for 30 years. The farewell crowd at City Hall included former Mayor Don Ness, members of the Fire Department, and various other city…