June sales tax collections up here

Published 12:05 am Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Sales tax collections were up for the bulk of the county’s municipal governments through June.

Collections were up for the cities of Opp and Florala, and Covington County, and about level for the city of Andalusia.

Collections in Opp were $1,389,300, or 3.59 percent higher than last year.

“We’re very pleased that it’s up,” Opp City Clerk Connie Smith said.

In Florala, collections in June were up 9.3 percent, or $30,000 over what the city budgeted for the year at $419,025.

Florala Mayor Robert Williamson said the sales tax numbers are up substantially.

“Our general fund certainly has more money than this time of year,” Williamson said. “Obviously, people are coming through and buying gas, but it is up substantially.”

In October, the Florala City Council approved an ordinance that increased the sales taxes in January. The ordinance raised the city sales tax to 3 percent.

Williamson said the closing of the Jackson Pond Bridge for nine months didn’t seem to hurt the local economy. The bridge opened to traffic last week.

“It’s not killing somebody’s business,” he said.

In Andalusia, the city has collected $5,892,990 in its fiscal year to date. In June for May’s sales, $630,382 have been remitted.

Andalusia City Clerk John Thompson said the sales collections from May will grow.

“The first number collections for the month is very preliminary,” Thompson said. “With the 630 number, some people pay late, but that number will grow.”

Thompson said when the city collects sales taxes for the last quarter of the year, he expects it to be more than last year.

“It’s a running total,” he said. “It changes numbers and becomes more accurate over time.”

In Covington County, $6,390,234 has been collected through June, which is up more than $300,000 collected this time last year.