Sales tax totals down, but still good for city

Published 5:00 am Thursday, September 27, 2001

Brookhaven continued to see flat sales tax collections inAugust, but last month’s total still kept the city among thebest-performing in the state, according to statistics from theMississippi Tax Commission.

The city’s total was $315,389.86, over $5,000 less than August2000’s total of $320,868.11.

“Even with the decline, we ended up 19th in the state,” saidChandler Russ, executive vice-president of the Brookhaven-LincolnCounty Chamber of Commerce. “That means we’re still one of the Top20 retail markets throughout the state.”

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Russ said most cities’ collections were flat or saw only modestincreases in August.

“I think we’re just seeing a reflection of a slowing nationaleconomy that’s beginning to hit a little at home,” Russ said.

For the first two months of fiscal year 2002, year-to-datecollections also were a little off last year’s pace. This year, thetotal was $634,814.92 compared to $640,819.43 last year.

“We’re going to continue to work to maintain and continue togrow our retail tax base,” Russ said.

As the economy begins to slow, Russ said it is time to plan forfuture growth and prosperity.

A key part of that planning process is a new industrial park.Chamber officials are pursuing a study to identify possible newsites.

“The new industrial park will be vitally important in continuingto see the sales tax growth that we’ve seen in the past,” Russsaid.

In other parts of southwest Mississippi, McComb collectionsclimbed to $338,537.81 in August sales tax. The August 2001 total,which placed the city 18th in the state, represented an increase ofonly about $1,500 from the August 2000 total of $336,948.32.

In year-to-date totals, McComb had $690,655.07 in 2001 and$683,356.64 in 2000.

Also in Pike County, Summit businesses gathered $19,943.90 inAugust sales tax, an increase from last August’s $18,708.93. Forthe years-to-date, the town’s 2001 total was $40,779.41, almost$2,000 above 2000’s $38,994.59.

In Lawrence County, Monticello merchants took in $29,320.68 forthe city’s share of August 2001 sales tax, a noticeable decreasefrom August 2000’s $31,826.34. The city’s 2001 year-to-date totalcontinued to be off its 2000 pace: $58,613.70 this year and$63,005.00 last year.

Wesson businesses’ August sales tax collections were down to$8,563.99, compared to $9,115.72 last August. Its year-to-datetotal was running a little ahead of its 2000 pace with $19.939.36this year and $18,507.66 last year.

To the west in Franklin County, Bude businesses rang up$7,536.37 for the town, a little increase compared to August 2000’s$6,963.86. For 2001, its yearly total was $16,891.98 and $16,019.81in 2000.

Meadville merchants took in $7,609.25 in August 2001, a $1,300decrease from August 2000 with $8,921.45. Yearly totals show thetown with $15,345.45 in 2001 collections and $18,037.42 in 2000collections.