Sales tax drops sharply in September
For the third consecutive month, sales tax disbursements to the bi-county area have slid below 2011 levels. The September monthly total dropped 12 percent from 2011, even though the sum was 7 percent above the 2010 tally.
Monett's September sales tax disbursement, historically the biggest of the year, topped the $255,000 level for the general fund in 2006 and 2007 before the economic downturn. This year, the city's two sales taxes supplying the general fund produced $181,676.03, the second lowest amount in the past five years. The total was down $23,649.09 from last year.
Halfway through the current fiscal year, with only one month showing a better balance than in 2011, Monett's general fund total of $899,455.72 is down 7 percent from last year's pace. The city budget projected a 1.5 percent increase in sales tax revenue for the year.
City Administrator Dennis Pyle said the current direction is pointing toward a $140,000 overall sales tax shortfall for the year. He saw few indicators to suggest a turnaround was pending.
So far in 2012, Monett's four sales taxes are showing a 4 percent drop from the 2011 rate.
Towns near Monett have reported varied results.
Pierce City sales taxes showed gains in three of the last four months, with the biggest gains in September. Pierce City's tax receipts rose 16 percent from last September. The general fund, now collecting two taxes, hit a record of $13,022.05, up $1,828.34 from a year ago, though the old tax by itself generated 17 percent more before the economic downturn in 2008.
Pierce City's five-month fiscal year total for the general fund is running about $1,000 below last year's pace. The 2012 total after three quarters is up by 2 percent.
Purdy also saw gains for the month. The city's one-cent sales tax for general expenses generated $6,586.38, up $546.30 from last year and the best September payment since 2009.
The payment broke a two-month stretch of lower funds, compared to last year. Purdy's sales tax has been up in five of the last nine months. The general fund total for first three quarters of 2012 is 2 percent below last year.
Verona, whose sales tax has topped 2011 only once this year, received $3,032.32 in September, down $414.75 from a year ago. Verona's six-month fiscal year tally of $12,412.37 is down 30 percent from last year's pace. The 2012 total is down 19 percent.
Total sales tax coming into the bi-county area in September, not counting the 911 sales tax for Barry County, was $1,804,673.58, down $227,642 from a year ago. Prior to the economic downturn, the last time the September total was lower took place in 2005.
The seven Barry County cities collecting sales tax received $554,253.25 in September, down 11 percent from 2011. Exeter, Washburn and Wheaton joined Purdy in topping last year's totals.
For the year to date, Cassville is ahead of last year's totals by 2 percent. Seligman is up by 3 percent. Exeter and Washburn are down by 2 percent and Wheaton is down by 4 percent.
The six Lawrence County cities collecting sales tax received $433,801.94 in September, down 12 percent from a year ago. Marionville, Miller and Mt. Vernon joined Pierce City in besting last September's totals.
For 2012, Miller's receipts surpassed last year by 19 percent. Mt. Vernon is up by 2 percent. Aurora and Marionville are down by 4 percent.
Lawrence County's three half-cent sales taxes each generated around $134,700 in September, almost $78,000 less for the three combined. The 2012 tally is running 1 percent below last year's pace.
Lawrence County's use tax, collected on out-of-state sales, generated $296,160.86 in nine months, 22 percent more than a year ago.
Barry County's two half-cent sales taxes each generated $206,243 for the month, about $11,000 less than last year. Barry County's 2012 totals are 2 percent below last year's pace.
The 911 tax in Barry County has begun receiving payments from the one-eighth of a cent sales tax passed in April. The payment of $137,658.92 is up nearly $30,000 from last September, bringing the 2012 total after three quarters to $732,540.60.