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Sales tax showing drop in area

Sales tax showing drop in area

POSTED: Monday, December 14, 2009 - 3:42pm

UPDATED: Wednesday, March 17, 2010 - 11:06am

KILGORE - In calendar year 2008, Kilgore received $11.711 million from sales taxes collected on sales in the city. In the year that ended this month, that total dropped more than 14 percent to $10,035,182 million.

In the second half of the year, though, sales tax receipts were the lowest received here since the last half of 2005 - far worse than the 12-month total would indicate. With those numbers in mind, the city's 2009-10 budget anticipates $6,166,875 in sales tax revenue - a number about $500,000 less than 2005's total receipts. And through the first quarter of the fiscal year, the city is on track to receive even less than that.

With the receipt of $722,372 this week, Kilgore - with 25 percent of the tax year complete — has received 23.68 percent of its budget. That check is down 36.5 percent from the $1.138 million the city received last December.

Texas Comptroller Susan Combs today said the state collected $1.70 billion in sales tax in November, down 14.4 percent compared to November 2008. Sales tax rebate checks sent this week represent taxes collected in November on October sales.

"Sales tax collections, declining since February 2009, continued to be weak in November," Combs said. "Compared to a year ago, sales tax collections were down across all major sectors of the Texas economy, including oil and natural gas production, construction, manufacturing and retail trade."

Every city in Gregg County except Easton saw sales rebates in December decline sharply from a year ago. White Oak recorded a 48 percent decline to $45,154, Longview's check was down 23.99 percent to $1.968 million and Gladewater's check for $66,896 was down 14.33 percent from last December's rebate.

Other area communities and the change in their sales tax rebate include Clarksville City, $1,875, down 20.2 percent; Lakeport, $3,874, down 10.45 percent; Warren City, $157, down .55 percent; Easton, $610, up 3.94 percent; Overton, $23,342, down 7.16 percent; Henderson, $298,104, down 41.83 percent and Marshall, $522,045, down 28.44 percent.

Gregg County received a check for $872,553, down more than 28 percent from $1.352 million received last December. Rusk County does not levy a sales tax on sales outside incorporated cities.

The Comptroller sent cities, counties, special purpose districts and transit systems $417.1 million in December sales tax allocations, down 14.6 percent compared to last December. The final sales tax allocation of 2009 brings local sales tax revenue for the year to $5.6 billion, 5.1 percent less than in 2008.

Combs sent Texas cities December sales tax allocations of $279.6 million, down 14.9 percent compared to December 2008. Counties' December sales tax allocations totaled $24.6 million, down 20.2 percent compared to December 2008.

Ten local transit systems received December sales tax allocations of $96.5 million, a 12.1 percent decline compared to December 2008. December sales tax allocations of $16.3 million went to 163 special-purpose taxing districts, a decrease of 15.4 percent compared to last December.

Henderson levies a two percent sales tax; most other cities in the area, including Kilgore, levy a 1.5 percent tax.

The next local sales tax allocation will be made on Friday, Jan.8.

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