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Sales tax collections slip in August

Brookhaven sales tax totals slipped slightly in August, but cityofficials remain confident about the potential for strong monthsahead.

At $329,233.16 for August 2005, Brookhaven’s total was downalmost $12,000 from August 2004’s $341,225.56, according to thestate Tax Commission. The 2005 total represents sales made in June,collections by the state in July and returned to cities lastmonth.

Mayor Bob Massengill said the August total was disappointing butnot a cause for concern.

“I’m not really concerned based on the comments I’ve heard fromretailers and what automobile dealers have told me,” Massengillsaid.

The mayor said those comments suggested an “excellent” salesmonth for July, which would be seen in the September returns.

“I think we’ll be pleasantly surprised at the totals we seethen,” Massengill said.

For budget purposes, Brookhaven officials like to have $350,000in sales tax collections a month. Massengill said it isdisappointing when that does not happen.

“Every now and then, you’ll have a month that’s a little slow,”the mayor said.

The August dropped Brookhaven to number 25 among the top salestax collectors. Brookhaven was not alone in seeing decliningtotals, as 16 cities in the top 25 had August 2005 collectionsbelow those of the same period in 2004.

Brookhaven’s cumulative collections this year remain ahead ofthose at the same point in 2004. After two months of collections,Brookhaven’s 2005 total was $694,696.18 compared to $661,804.87 in2004.