August sales tax collections set new record

Collections of sales tax for the month of August totaled $509,564, setting a new record for the largest amount of sales tax revenue collected during any month. This amount represents an increase of $68,665, or 15.6%, compared to August 2014.

Part of the increase in tax revenue is attributed to the Gentlemen of The Road event held in Salida from August 20 – 22. Any increases in revenue for vendors that file sales tax reports quarterly will not be seen until the September reports are processed.

Year-to-date sales tax collections of $3,247,015 are $289,215, or 9.8%, greater than the same period in 2014.

The August 2015 sales tax collected by businesses engaged in retail trade, which comprises approximately two-thirds of Salida’s total sales tax, increased 15.9% although, within that group, automotive related retail sales decreased 5.1% compared to August 2014. The next largest industry group is restaurants with nearly one-sixth of the total; sales tax reported by this group of businesses increased 31.4% in August. Sales tax collected by hotels, motels and vacation rentals increased 30.0% in August. As a percentage of total collections, the lodging industry only accounts for about 5%; however, this group is also an indicator for the level of tourism that brings spending in other sectors, as well.

Salida’s share of the Chaffee County tax for August was $166,890 an increase of $20,634 or 14.1%. Year-to-date disbursements of $1,056,574 are $97,078 or 10.1%, greater than the same period in 2014. Chaffee County’s 2% sales tax is shared with the three municipalities within the county under a long-standing intergovernmental agreement. The allocation is based on motor vehicle registrations throughout the county, yielding Salida approximately one-quarter of the county tax. Businesses located in the Salida city limits collect just over half of the county tax.

Please review the full “Sales Tax Trend Report” for further details. Each month, City staff updates this report with the current sales tax data and other general fund highlights. In addition to data about sales tax, the most important revenue source for government operations, it includes total revenues and expenditures, cash balances and financing obligations. The report can be accessed at a “quick link” on the home page or through the financial documents page. The City Treasurer presents this report to the council during the second regular meeting of each month.

City staff strives to provide information that serves to educate and engage its constituents. Your questions and suggestions are always appreciated.