Sales tax revenues improving

Published 12:01 am Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Cash registers across the county are continuing to rack up the sales – and in turn, a move that is helping to keep sales tax revenue steady throughout the area.

The most recent figures available show that collections for October 2010, which were remitted in November, were up in the county and Opp while holding steady in Andalusia.

Assistant County Admin-istrator Pam Steele said the county collected $636,747 for the month – a nearly $30,000 increase from October 2009’s sales.

That figure brings the county’s year-to-date total to just over $1.2 million – a 3.49 percent increase over November 2009’s year-to-date collection.

Andalusia City Clerk John Thompson said the city’s sales tax collections for October totaled $371,620 – a less than $5,000 decrease from the same period last year.

“We’re off 0.67 percent for the year thus far.” Thompson said. “We continue to feel very good about sales tax collections in Andalusia considering we’re seeing stability at a time when much of the state, region and nation are dealing with steep declines in revenue.”

Thompson said the city was fortunate to have leadership that is “investing in our economy so that we will be able to reap future dividends similar to what we’re seeing today.”

“In fact, as the recovery strengthens, we should be in an even better position looking out over the next 12 to 36 months,” he said. “I shudder to think what our position would be today if not for investment that our leadership made in the last 10 years. The same can be said for the future.”

In Opp, collections were up from this time last year, said City Clerk Connie Smith.

“We collected $153,637, which represents a 2.5 percent increase or $3,756, for us over last year,” she said.

In October 2009, sales taxes collected totaled $149,881.

In Florala, collections were up a little more than $6,000 from this time last year, City Clerk Kathy Rathel said.

“This year, we collected $38,692.10 for October’s sales,” she said. “Last year, it was $32,551, so we’re up and we will surely take it.”

As residents continue with their holiday purchases, local leaders hope to see an increase in sales tax collections in the coming months.