BLOUNTVILLE — Sales tax revenues continued to grow this month in Sullivan County, with a year-to-date growth of nearly 7 percent over last year, according to a report released last week by the county’s accounting department.
In the two months since the fiscal year began, countywide sales tax revenues have been up both months compared to the same months a year ago.
Cumulatively, sales tax revenues in Sullivan County are running about $508,000 above last year at this point, according to the report.
The boost appears to be thanks mainly to the Kingsport city area, where sales tax revenues are up about $683,000 from last year at this point.
And that helps affect budgets countywide, not just in the Model City.
According to Sullivan County’s current budget document, Kingsport businesses collected 63 percent of all sales taxes in the county in fiscal year 2007 — but the cash flow back to the city and the city’s school system accounted for only 45 percent of the money.
In contrast, 12 percent of all sales taxes collected in the county in fiscal year 2007 were collected at businesses located outside any of the cities — but cash flow back to the county and the county’s school system accounted for 34 percent of the money.
A two-month spreadsheet by the county’s accounting department shows sales tax revenues from September this year, countywide, came in about $244,000 above September 2007.
That’s following on a gain of about $264,000 in August, compared to August 2007.
Sales tax revenues are generated when money is spent on goods and services at businesses throughout the county and its cities. The money is used by local governments, largely, to support school systems.
When a consumer pays sales tax locally, it is sent to the state, which redistributes it back to the county and its cities based on collection site.
Sales tax revenue is typically distributed back to localities two months after being collected.
Taxes collected during July, for example, come back to the localities in September.
Local option sales tax revenues are split 50/50 — with half going to school systems in the county, and the other half going to the local government where the collecting business is located.
Each $1 of local option sales taxes collected in Kingsport, for example, generates 50 cents for the county’s three school systems (the money is split based on average daily attendance) and 50 cents for city coffers.
For the two-month period of August and September, sales tax revenues from non-city portions of the county are down about 5.3 percent — about $33,000 — compared to this time last year, according to the report — which also indicates:
•Sales tax revenues received by local governments in Sullivan County for the two-month period totaled more than $7.84 million. That’s up from about $7.33 million compared to a year ago.
•For the same period last year, the state sent about $4.36 million total back for sales taxes collected within the city of Kingsport — with half, or about $2.18 million — going to the city of Kingsport’s coffers and the other half being split among local school systems.
•This year the Kingsport total for the two-month period was a little more than $5.04 million, with half — roughly $2.52 million — going to city coffers, and the other half going to the school systems.
•Kingsport’s non-school share, since fiscal year 2009 began on July 1, shows an increase of about $342,000 compared to last year at this point.
•The Sullivan County school system’s year-to-date share is about $2.15 million, up about $123,000 compared to this point last year.
•The Bristol City Schools system’s year-to-date share is about $704,000, up about $58,000 compared to this point last year.
•The Kingsport City Schools system’s year-to-date share is about $1.06 million, up about $73,000 compared to this point last year.
•The city of Bristol’s year-to-date non-school share is about $770,000, down about $34,000 compared to this point last year.
•Bluff City’s year-to-date share is about $36,500, down about $21,100 compared to this point last year.
Fiscal year 2008 began July 1 and covers the county’s finances — and that of other local governments — through June 30, 2008.