• July 25, 2014

Budget director: Copperas Cove sales tax down, but picking up

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Posted: Friday, March 28, 2014 4:30 am

Sales tax allocations for Copperas Cove are lagging by 2 percent in a six-month comparison.

State sales tax allocations between October and March are about $49,000 behind figures between October 2012 and March 2013, according to data from the state comptroller’s office.

February marked the city’s first comparison gain in the revenue source since August, the data said. The city earned almost $20,000 more sales tax revenue during the month compared to August 2012.

City officials cited the federal government budget and furloughs as the cause of declining sale tax figures during previous interviews.

It is too early to tell how the smaller amount of dollars could affect the city’s budget, said Ryan Haverlah, budget director.

“Overall, yes, we are still down,” Haverlah said. “And based on the way we budget our sales tax that does not put the city in a positive position.”

However, the city is only four months into the budget year, since the figures are geared to the months when the sales occurred, Haverlah said.

There are still two months for hopefully positive gains, he said.

February’s allocations are actually December’s sales.

February also is one of the city’s highest grossing months because of the holiday season, Haverlah said.

This year the city experienced a $418,000 allocation compared to 2013’s $412,000 allocation, or a 1.4 percent increase, stated the comptroller’s data. The February figure also marked the city’s largest sales tax allocation ever.

March experienced a larger percentage gain, 5 percent, compared to the previous March but only netted the city $307,000 for the revenue source.

With the two previous months’ increases, the city is still behind on its budgeted revenue, Haverlah said.

For the 2014 fiscal year, the city budgeted a 1 percent increase on top of projections based on information from an economic development agreement with Endeavor Real Estates for the Five Hills shopping center.

During April, the city will be re-evaluating its revenues and budget, Haverlah said. It will then determine how to handle any possible shortfalls. It also will set goals for next year’s budget.

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