Good news on Verde sales tax

September revenue up for most Verde Valley communities

VERDE VALLEY - "The town seems real busy," said Jerome Town Manager Candace Gallagher. "The shopkeepers are happy."

Gallagher was responding to the September sales tax revenue report by the Arizona Department of Revenue's Office of Economic Research and Analysis.

Jerome, for several months in a row, has been up in retail sales tax, total sales tax for the month, and year-to-date total sales tax collections. The increases in Jerome's sales tax revenue goes beyond the increase the town took in its sales tax rate during the last fiscal year.

Jerome collected $16,280 for September in retail sales tax, an increase from the $11,278 collected for the same month last year. Sales tax in all categories for September was up from $35,810 last year to $41,792 this year.

In the year-to-date sales tax revenue category, Jerome is up to $138,592 this year from $114,560 for the same period last year.

Gallagher said town staff and town council saw that sales taxes were on an upward trend, and the town budgeted for that increase. She said that so far the budget predictions have been on the mark.

"I think it's positive for Jerome," Gallagher said. "Being a real tourist destination, we're seeing more people."

Camp Verde was up in retail and total sales tax categories for September, but the town is still down in its year-to-date category. Lisa Elliot, senior accountant, hasn't seen anything significant enough yet to put a positive spin on.

Retail sales tax in Camp Verde for September climbed to $55,823 from $39,633 last year. Elliot said she hasn't had the opportunity yet to compare or analyze the retail figures.

The total sales tax revenue category also was up for September, from $150,643 last year to $170,126 this year. But Elliot isn't ready to forecast an economic upturn based on that figure.

"The $20,000 overall increase is attributed to the communication and utilities category," she said. That category had a jump of about $20,000.

"There seems to be some sort of anomaly there," she said. She said they have requested an explanation from the Department of Revenue but have not heard anything yet.

Year-to-date total sales tax revenue for Camp Verde is down through September from $517,857 last year to $461,462 for the same period this year.

Clarkdale also is up in two categories over last September. While retail sales tax is down from $6,150 last year to $5,029 this year, the total sales tax revenue category is up to $54,996 in September from $45,981 last year.

Year-to-date revenue in all categories of sales tax collections is up in Clarkdale to $175,430 from $144,800 for the same period last year.

Sedona, too, is seeing some sales tax increases for September. Retail collections were down a little from $238,075 last year to $235,490 this year. But total sales tax revenue in all categories is up to $1,022,615 for September from $990,181 last year.

Year-to-date sales tax revenue in all categories for Sedona is up from $3,064,772 to $3,080,885 for the same period this year.

Cottonwood is the only community in the Verde Valley to be down in September in retail, total and year-to-date categories of sales tax revenue.

Retail collections were $529,057 for September, a drop from $539,432 for the same month last year. Total sales tax revenue in all categories was also down to $838,854 in September from $851,036 last year.

Year-to-date total sales tax revenue also dropped in September from $2,668,762 last year to $2,566,176 for the same period this year.

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