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Sales tax revenue up slightly

Brookhaven’s sales tax diversion for August was $476,095.49, an increase of 1 percent from $471,296.10 a year ago, according to data recently released by the Mississippi Department of Revenue.

Total gross sales in August were $82.5 million for Brookhaven, down 13.4 percent from $93.5 million in August 2015. The county also saw a loss in gross sales since last year. In August, there were $99.1 million in gross sales in Lincoln County, down 12.5 percent from the $111.5 million in gross sales in 2015.

Sales tax has a three-month cycle. Month one is when the tax is collected by the retailer. Month two is when the tax is reported/paid to the DOR by the retailer, and month three is when the sales tax diversion is paid by the DOR to cities. This means the number labeled August reflects the sales tax collected in July of that year, which the city actually receives a check for in September.

City clerk Mike Jinks wasn’t worried, despite only seeing a slight increase in sales tax revenue.

“There’s just nothing to generate a lot of extra sales like you do when a holiday is coming up,” he said. “Those kinds of things generate extra sales.”

Jinks said the city is budgeted at about $475,000 each month, and excess funds are saved to handle the months that fall below that number.

“We’re $17,000 above budget for sales tax this year,” he said. “We have got more than we expected.”