Currently Imposed Local Sales Taxes in Minnesota

Taxing Jurisdiction & Year Authorized Rate Approval required Use of Revenues / Other Comments
Duluth – 1973 1.0% City council approval The tax may be used for any city purpose, as determined by the city council. No expiration date.
Rochester – 1983 0.5% All but 1989 extension required voter approval at a general or special election This tax has been renewed five times, in 1989, 1992, 1998, 2005, and 2011. Initially enacted at 1.0% to raise $16 million for a civic center and $16 million for flood control; the rate was lowered to 0.5% in 1992. The 1998 extension allows the city to raise another $76 million for various higher education, transportation, and sewer capital projects. The tax extension in the 2005 special legislative session allowed another $40 million to be raised for a joint road project with Olmsted County. In 2011 the tax was extended again to fund an additional $139.5 million in projects if approved by the voters at the 2012 general election. However, $5 million of the new $139.5 million must be shared with small cities surrounding Rochester for economic development purposes in those communities.
Minneapolis – 1986 0.5% Approval of the city’s board of estimate and taxation, and after imposition of the local restaurant and lodging taxes Fund construction and maintenance of the convention center. In 1992 the city was authorized to use excess proceeds for neighborhood early learning centers but the city has not done so. The tax expires when all bonds are paid off. In 2009, the use of the revenue was modified to allow the city to use revenues collected in excess of the convention center bond payments for other city purposes. For CY 2009 and 2010, the excess revenues could be used for any purpose. Beginning in CY 2011, the excess revenues could only be used to fund capital projects to further economic development.
Mankato – 1991 0.5% Reverse referendum for initial approval invoked by petition of 10% of voters in the most recent general election To fund capital and operations of the Riverfront project, including a sports arena. In 1996 this was expanded to allow $4.5 million for an airport project. The tax was extended again in the 2005 special legislative session to allow up to $1.5 million annually to fund operating costs of the Riverfront facility based on approval by the voters at a general or special election. The tax was to expire no later than 2018. In 2008 the allowed uses of the tax were modified to exclude operating costs and include capital costs of an attached performing arts theatre and a women’s hockey exposition center used by Minnesota State University, Mankato. The expiration date was moved to December 31, 2022. A reverse referendum for these changes could be invoked by a petition of 10% of the voters in the most recent general election. In 2009, the requirement that the performing arts center and hockey center be attached to the Riverfront facility was removed.
St. Paul – 1993 0.5% A city resolution passed before July 1, 1993, stating the intent to impose the tax 40% must be used to fund capital costs of the civic center, which includes the hockey arena; the remainder may be used for other neighborhood projects. The allowed uses of the remaining 60% of the revenues have been modified over time, most recently in 2009. Expires December 31, 2030.
Hermantown – 1996 0.5% Required voter approval at a general or special election The projects included water and sewer projects and a police/fire station. The tax expires at the later of ten years or when sufficient funds have been raised for the three projects. A 2008 provision added water system improvements to the list of approved projects. In 2011 the city was given authority to increase the tax by an additional 0.5% if approved at the 2012 general election because the original authority had been to impose up to a 1.0% tax and the revenues from the 0.5% tax were insufficient to fund the authorized projects.
Two Harbors – 1998 0.5% Required voter approval at the 1998 general election The projects included sewer separation, wastewater treatment, and harbor development projects. The tax expires when sufficient funds have been raised for the three projects.
Proctor – 1999 0.5% Required voter approval at a special election held November 2, 1999 Funded community center and transportation projects. Tax expires when sufficient funds to pay for up to $3.6 million in bonds for the center have been raised. A 2008 provision allowed up to another $7.2 million in capital projects in the areas of public utilities, sidewalks, bikeways and trails, and parks and recreation. In 2010 legislation was introduced to replace the two separate bond authorities of $3.6 million and $7.2 million with one authority for $20 million, but the final provision signed into law replaced it with a combined authority of $10 million.
New Ulm – 1999 0.5% Required voter approval at the 1999 general election Funded a civic and community center project. Tax expires when sufficient funds to pay for up to $9 million in bonds for the center have been raised.
Central Minnesota Cities – 2002 (includes St. Cloud, Sauk Rapids, Sartell, St. Augusta, St. Joseph, and Waite Park) 0.5% Required voter approval at a general election in each city Funded improvements of the St. Cloud airport and other capital projects in each city. The authorizing referenda in St. Joseph and Waite Park originally failed so the tax was not imposed in those cities, but in 2005, Waite Park was allowed to impose the tax based on a successful 2004 referendum. In 2005, the group of cities was allowed to replace this tax with an identical tax to fund a new regional library in St. Cloud and other capital projects in each city. Imposition required voter approval at a general election, which passed in all cities, including St. Joseph. The tax expires in 2018.
Albert Lea – 2005 0.5% Required voter approval at the 2006 general election, or a special election on November 8, 2005 Fund a lake improvement project. Expires at the earlier of ten years or when $15 million is raised.
Bemidji – 2005 0.5% Based on voter approval at the 2002 general election Fund park and trail improvements. Expires when revenues are raised to pay $9.826 million in bonds.
Willmar – 2005 0.5% Based on voter approval at the 2004 general election Fund an airport, park and trails, and civic center improvement projects. Expires at the later of seven years or when revenues raised are sufficient to pay $8 million in bonds. Any excess revenue is deposited in the city general fund.
Worthington – 2005 0.5% Voter approval by a general election held before December 31, 2009 Fund construction of a community center and renovations to the Memorial Auditorium. Expires at the earlier of ten years or when revenues raised are sufficient to pay $6 million in bonds. The original law required that the authorizing referendum to impose the tax be held at the 2006 general election but this was changed during the 2006 session to allow the referendum to be held at a later date.
Austin – 2006 Baxter – 2006 0.5 % Voter approval at a general or special election before January 1, 2007 Fund flood mitigation projects. Expires at the earlier of 20 years or when revenues are sufficient to pay $14 million in bonds. Any excess revenue is deposited in the city general fund.
Baxter – 2006 0.5% Voter approval at the 2004 general election Fund joint water and wastewater facilities for the cities of Baxter and Brainerd and a fire substation for Baxter. Expires at the earlier of 12 years or when revenues are sufficient to pay $15 million in bonds. Any excess revenue is deposited in the city capital project fund.
Brainerd – 2006 0.5% Fund joint water and wastewater facilities for the cities of Baxter and Brainerd and a fire substation for Baxter. Expires at the earlier of 12 years or when revenues are sufficient to pay $15 million in bonds. Any excess revenue is deposited in the city capital project fund.
Hennepin County – 2006 0.15% No voter approval required Fund up to $260 million in costs for a baseball stadium plus up to $4 million annually (adjusted for inflation) to fund youth, youth sports, and county libraries. Expires when the stadium bonds are paid off or when reserves from the tax are sufficient to pay the bonds. In 2010 the law was modified to include a definition of “sufficient reserves.”
Clearwater – 2008 0.5% Based on voter approval at the 2006 general election Fund the acquisition, construction, and improvement of a pedestrian bridge and land and buildings for a community recreation center. In 2011 the allowed uses were expanded to include park and recreation projects contained in the city’s 2006 improvement plan. Expires at the later of 20 years after imposition or when revenues are sufficient to fund $12 million in bonds. Any excess revenue is deposited in the city general fund.
Cook County – 2008 1.0% Voter approval at a general or special election before December 31, 2009 Fund the construction and improvements to a county community center and recreation area, including a skateboard park, hockey rink, ball fields, tennis courts, and associated improvements and the Grand Marais public library. Expires at the later of 20 years after imposition or when revenues are sufficient to fund $14 million in bonds. Any excess revenue is deposited in the county general fund. In 2009 the authority to use revenues for a skateboard park, hockey rink, ball fields, and tennis courts was eliminated, and the use was expanded to include construction and improvement of a high-speed communication infrastructure network and a district energy plant for public facilities in Grand Marais. The bonding authority was increased from $14 million to $20 million.
North Mankato – 2008 0.5% Based on voter approval at the 2006 general election Fund up to $6 million in capital costs for the local share of the Trunk Highway 14/County State-Aid Highway 41 interchange project, the Taylor library, regional parks and trails, riverfront development, and lake improvement projects. Expires when revenues are sufficient to fund the $6 million in bonds plus associated bond costs. Any excess revenue is deposited in the city capital project fund.
Fergus Falls – 2011 0.5% Approved by the voters at the 2010 general election Fund up to $6 million in costs related to a community ice arena facility. Expires when revenues raises are sufficient to finance the facility and pay associated bond costs. Any excess revenue is deposited in the city general fund.
Hutchinson – 2011 0.5% Approved by the voters at the 2010 general election Fund the costs of constructing the city’s water treatment facility and renovating the city’s wastewater treatment facility. Expires at the earlier of 18 years or when revenues are sufficient to pay for the projects and associated bond costs. Any excess revenue is deposited in the city general fund.
Lanesboro – 2011 0.5% Approved by the voters at the 2010 general election Fund up to $800,000 in improvements to the local dam, city streets and utilities, and municipal buildings. Expires when revenues are sufficient to fund the projects plus associated bond costs. Any excess revenue is deposited in the city general fund.

The content of this and any related posts has been copied or adopted from the Minnesota House of Representatives Research Department’s Information Brief, Local Sales Taxes in Minnesota, written by legislative analyst Pat Dalton.

This is also part of a series of posts on local sales taxes in Minnesota.