Black Friday helps boost sales taxes

Published 12:01 am Saturday, January 5, 2013

Black Friday lived up to its expectations as most municipalities reported increases in holiday sales tax collections.

Andalusia experienced the biggest gain in November sales, which are figures reported in December.

City Clerk John Thompson said the $350,762 collected represented a 4.5 percent increase from the same period last year.

“It looks like people shopped at home this holiday season,” Thompson said. “When we see the holiday season start strong in November, it’s always good news.”

Thompson said totals for the first quarter of the 2013 fiscal year, which represented October through December, also showed growth.

“We experienced a 5 percent increase for the quarter over the same period last year,” he said. “And that’s good news. We hope the rest of the year shapes up the same way, if not better.”

In Florala, City Clerk Kathy Rathel said collections were up more than $3,000 over budgeted totals for December as the city collected $31,700 for November sales.

“We budgeted $28,500, and were up,” Rathel said. “Our year-to-date budget was just shy of $92,000, but our receipts are $2,785 over budget, which is wonderful.”

Opp City Clerk Connie Smith said collections were down slightly in comparison. This year, the city collected $166,172 – a 1.4 percent decrease from the December 2011 total, she said.

County collection totals were not readily available.

-Kendra Bolling contributed to this report.