2015 likely a record for sales tax revenue in Silt
SILT — It looks like 2015 will be a record year in sales tax collections here.
A report presented to Silt trustees earlier this month states that the town has collected $597,452 in sales tax through November 2015. That is more than all of 2014 and more than the first 11 months of 2013, which Mayor Rick Aluise pointed out was a record-setting year for the town of roughly 3,000 people.
For all of 2013, Silt collected $624,451. To match that amount in 2015, sales tax collections for the last month of the year would have to come in at $26,999 — approximately $13,000 less than the worst month for sales tax collections over the past three years.
Pamela Woods, town administrator, told trustees that December’s numbers do appear to be down, but not to the dramatic level that would prevent the town from surpassing the 2013 record. Although December’s numbers were not presented to trustees, Woods said after the meeting that revenue for the last month of the year is in excess of $50,000.
In early 2014, Woods pointed to the opening of the Dollar General store and other retail businesses as the cause for the spike in sales tax collections in 2013. After a downturn in 2014, which saw a total of $597,609 in sales tax revenues, the town has rebounded.
Silt is not large enough to breakdown revenue collections into specific sectors, but Woods said most businesses are seeing an increase.
Although not single-handedly responsible, two marijuana dispensaries have opened since the record year of 2013 and those businesses have helped, Woods said. Also the Silt/Colorado River KOA campground opened in 2015, which has drawn people to town.
The town also has sponsored events, such as free concerts, in an effort to keep residents in Silt, rather than seeking entertainment elsewhere, Woods said.
The news comes as the town continues efforts to attract a grocery store. Also on Monday, trustees approved a revised market analysis to determine the feasibility of a grocery store and other retail in Silt. The study contained few differences from a draft version presented to trustees in November. The analysis concludes that there is real potential for more retail development in the town.
The analysis will be included in a “request for proposal” that will eventually be sent out to potential developers. Woods said staff expects for present the request to trustees later this month or in early February.
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State department of transportation crews are well on their way to clearing Highway 82 to Independence Pass, which should open on schedule May 27 at noon.