City sales tax receipts for November are encouraging for the fifth month of the fiscal year, City Manager Larry Stevens said this week.
So far the city has collected more than $13.6 million for the fiscal year, according to the office of Edmond Finance Director Ross A. VanderHamm. Year-to-date collections are over budget by $1,213 million
November revenue is $2.663 million, or 17.3 percent more than two years ago. The brisk sales tax collections represents the last two weeks of September and the first two weeks in October.
However, sales were less than last month’s 17.9-percent growth rate, Stevens said. The City Council budgeted for a 6 percent gain in sales tax revenue.
City staff is going to stop saying they expect the continuing high numbers of sales tax receipts to moderate, Stevens said.
“Every time we’ve said that, it hasn’t,” Stevens said. “We’re glad that we’re wrong. We still expect it to at some point.”
The Edmond City Council chose not to use the FY 2012-13 figures for a budget projection this year. The council along with the city had been describing the city’s revenue growth as an anomaly.
“I think last year we had some big jump from the storms and roof repairs and that’s pretty well done at this point,” said Nick Massey, city councilman.
Edmond residents are also spending more money per household, Massey said.
“That’s an indication that people in Edmond seem to feel good about the economy,” Massey said.
The city continues to attract new residents at a steady pace, Massey said. Shopping opportunities in town have grown as well as grocery stores, he said.
“A lot of people that maybe were going to Oklahoma City for groceries are now shopping in Edmond, Massey said.
November’s sales tax receipt also included the first two weeks of Sam’s Club opening in Edmond, VanderHamm said. There is also more economic activity in building and contracting service of the local economy, he said.
Edmond’s 17.3 percent increase in sales tax revenue does not include the half-cent sales tax dedicated to fund the city’s new $27.478 million to fund the Public Safety Center building construction.
The city’s sales tax is 3.75 percent when including the half-cent sales tax. It is added to the 4.50 percent state sales tax. The half-cent tax began in April, 2012 with a sunset clause for 2017. So far the half-cent tax has earned $12.1 million.
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