Duluth residents and tourists to the city can expect a half-percent tax on hotel stays and food and beverages served at local restaurants.

The Duluth City Council unanimously approved the “half-and-half” tax Monday night. A half-percent tax on hotel stays and a half-percent tax on food and beverages served in the city is a reinstatement of a hospitality tax that expired in 2012.

Earlier this year the Minnesota Legislature authorized the city to reinstate the half-percent sales tax at will.

“This can be spent on tourism items,” said City Councilor Jay Fosle. “It would really help the zoo.”

“The new tax is expected to generate $1.4 million annually,” said Peg Spehar, the city’s chief financial officer, in a previous News Tribune report.

The City Council also voted unanimously for the sale of bonds for a maximum of $4.6 million for the city of Duluth to finance improvements to Wade Stadium and Spirit Mountain Recreation Area.

Mayor Don Ness has been pushing his initiative to build up the St. Louis River corridor in a bid to improve Duluth’s overall look and economy by attracting visitors and investors.