CARBONDALE — The town’s sales tax revenues are up slightly compared with last year’s at the same time, a sign that “things are slowly coming back” from the Great Recession of 2008-2010, according to Finance Director Renae Gustine.
She said sales tax revenues, which provide a majority of the town’s annual income, are up about 2.5 percent so far in 2013.
And the month of August 2013, she said, was up 4.2 percent over August 2012.
She said her office is now working on the third-quarter report about the town’s finances, which is due to be presented to the board of trustees in September and which will contain details not yet available concerning revenues and expenditures from July 1 through Sept. 1.
But as of Wednesday, Gustine reported, the town’s sales tax revenues had reached $2.2 million, which she said was approximately 67 percent of the total projected amount of $3.3 million for the year.
The biggest month of the year so far, in terms of increased sales tax revenues, was in July (reflecting sales taxes collected in June), when the revenues jumped by 5.9 percent over those of 2012.
Gustine said she had no explanation for the uptick in June sales, other than “it was the beginning of summer,” a remark delivered with a small chuckle. “There’s really nothing to pinpoint it on.”
And it is not due to better performance by any one sector of the Carbondale economy, she said.
The town splits its sales tax receipts into 10 different categories — utilities, manufacturing, wholesale, retail, medical marijuana, information technology, retail leasing, accommodations, food services and “other.”
“All the different sectors are experiencing increases,” she said of the sales tax picture.
Carbondale collects sales taxes at a rate of 3.5 percent, of which 0.52 percent is dedicated to recreation programs and facilities.
The remaining 2.98 percent of the sales tax income, she said, goes to the General Fund, she said. The General Fund covers the town’s day-to-day expenses, and is budgeted for $5.4 million in expenses in 2013. The sales tax portion, Gustine said, is expected to be approximately $2.83 million.