Glenwood’s sales tax drop lessens |

Glenwood’s sales tax drop lessens

Lynn Burton

Glenwood’s precipitous sales tax slide is easing up, after revenues dropped dramatically in August and September, according to city finance reports.

Sales tax collections for October were down 1.37 percent compared to October of 2001. August’s collections were down 6.08 percent over the previous year, and September’s were down 9.03 percent.

“September was kind of a surprise,” said Glenwood Springs finance director Mike Harman. “August and September were both down. It could have been tourism or shopping was down. I don’t know.”

Year to date through October, Glenwood Springs sales tax collections are down 3.2 percent compared to the same period last year.

Glenwood Springs has not received its November sales tax figures from the state.

Since January, Glenwood’s sales tax revenues have decreased in eight of 10 months compared to 2001. The only increases were in February and April, which saw revenues go up 0.43 and 0.46 percent respectively.

Until September’s 9 percent decline, the biggest drop was an 8.6 percent decrease in June. City officials attributed that decrease to the Coal Seam Fire, which forced an evacuation in parts of town, closed retail outlets and drove away tourists.

In the following month, July, sales tax collections were down 2.22 percent.

Glenwood’s sales tax rate is 3.45 percent. Through October, the city has collected $8.4 million Harman said. This compares to collections of $8.7 million for the same period last year.

Harman said sales taxes provide 46 percent of the city’s 2002 general fund budget, which is nearly identical to the 2003 budget.

Harman said other Colorado towns are seeing their sales tax revenues drop, but Glenwood Springs is doing better than many.

“We’re probably faring better than some of the more notable ski areas that rely on skiers,” Harman said.

Garfield County’s year to date sales tax revenues are up 0.01 percent through November compared to last year, on revenues of $5.3 million, according to figures from the county treasurer’s office.

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