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Sales tax totals break worst downward trend in over 15 years

Friday, May 29, 2009

(Photo)
Monett's historic downtown business district/
For the first time since January, sales tax receipts for bi-county cities were up in May, compared to a year ago. Although the gains were slight and not shared by every recipient, the combined municipal totals for cities in both Barry and Lawrence counties in May broke the worst trend of steady declines the bi-county area has seen in more than 15 years.

Monett did not share in the positive numbers but had the smallest decline compared to receipts from a year ago so far in 2009. Monett's two sales taxes for general expenses pulled in $109,615.79 in May, a drop of $4,824.74 or 5 percent, compared to the 24 percent dip seen in April. The total was second best on record for the month of May, more than double the amount received in 2007.

Two months into the new fiscal year, Monett's general fund receipts are running $47,000 under last year's pace and are down almost 10 percent for 2009.

Monett's half-cent tax for capital improvements generated $54,807.87 in May, and the quarter-cent tax to pay off the Justice Center yielded $25,721.41, each down by around 4 percent, compared to a year ago.

Pierce City started its new fiscal year with a record disbursement for May of $5,728.45. The total was $2,600 better than the old May record from 2005. The sum boosted the 2009 total over the 2008 tally for the first time since January. The half-cent taxes Pierce City collects for street maintenance and capital improvements each had gains of $1,884 over last May's totals.

Purdy also set a new record for May, receiving $9,436.01 from its two one-cent sales taxes for the general fund. The sum was 57 percent bigger than last May, when the old record was set. The amount broke a three-month string of declining receipts. Purdy's 11-month fiscal year total is $10,000 ahead of last year, while the 2009 tally is $2,400 below last year's pace.

Verona had its lowest May disbursement since 2004, taking in $1,024.85 from its one-cent tax for general expenses. It was only the second time this year Verona has had a comparative drop in receipts. Revenue from Verona's general fund sales tax and the half-cent sales tax for police and fire service were both down 47 percent from last May. The 2009 sum is running under last year's pace by less than $200.

Total sales tax revenue coming into the bi-county area, not counting the quarter-cent for Barry County's "911" system, came to $1,016,523.34 in May. The total was down 1 percent or $6,504.48 from last May, but remains the second best May on record, double the 2007 May total.

The seven Barry County towns collecting sales tax received $343,366.52 in May, a drop of less than $1,200 or a third of a percent from a year ago. Only Exeter, in addition to Monett, failed to top last May's totals.

Cassville's three sales taxes brought in a combined total of $122,290.86 for the month, a gain of $1,133.40 over last May. The total for all Cassville's sales tax receipts for 2009 to date is $1,614.60 higher than last year.

Wheaton's one-cent sales tax for general expenses took in $30.80 more a year ago. Washburn's three sales taxes combined generated $652.87 more than last May. Receipts from Seligman's three taxes were up by 45 percent in May. The one-cent sales tax for general expenses took in $6.970.69, for a 2009 total that is up 85 percent over last year's pace.

The total from Exeter's one-cent tax was down 29 percent from last May, the third consecutive month of lower receipts.

The six Lawrence County cities taking in sales tax generated $216,888.50 in revenue in May, also up a third of a percent from a year ago. Only Aurora, Mt. Vernon and Pierce City topped totals from last May.

Aurora's three taxes took in a total of $124,110.49, or $1,481.69 more than last May. For 2009, Aurora's combined sales tax revenue is up by $5,761.05.

Mt. Vernon's three sales taxes generated a combined total of $63,488.74 in May, up $3,581.11 from last May. The 2009 sum to date is down 3 percent from last year's pace.

Marionville's five sales taxes combined dropped by 23 percent from last May. The total of Miller's four sales taxes produced a sum that was $110.70 less from a year ago.

Lawrence County's three countywide half-cent sales taxes all showed a slight gain over last May. The three combined gained $1,423.24 over a year ago. The half-cent tax for general expenses set a new May record taking in $74,517.79. The 2009 total to date is down $32,271.31 or 6 percent from last year's pace.

Barry County's countywide half-cent taxes for general expenses and road maintenance each took in almost $8,200 less than last May. The May total was still the second best on record. Receipts from the county's half-cent tax for general expenses have dropped by almost 8 percent in 2009.

The quarter-cent tax collected for Barry County's "911" service brought in $3,993.72 less than last May. The total was the second highest in the four years that the tax has been collected. The 11-month fiscal year total is down by almost 3 percent, according to Barry County Emergency Services Board Treasurer Harold Schelin.



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