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Business & Technology

Sullivan County sales tax collections down for the month, up for the year

June 13th, 2012 10:58 pm by J. H. Osborne

BLOUNTVILLE — Monthly sales tax collections across Sullivan County, and the subsequent revenue to local school systems and governments, dipped downward in April, compared to the same month one year prior, according to a report prepared by the county’s budget office.


April collections came back to the county and its cities as revenue this month.


The countywide total of $3.61 million represents a dollar amount decrease of about $44,000 compared to the same month last year, according to the report.


Sullivan County’s fiscal year, like that of other local governments, began last July 1. Sales tax revenues have been up, overall, in nine of the 11 months since.


Since the fiscal year began, the countywide total remains up about 6 percent — or about $2.47 million — over the same period a year ago, according to the report.


Dollarwise, most of that year-to-date growth — about $1.48 million — came from businesses inside the city of Kingsport.


Sales tax revenues come back to the localities two months after they are collected by local merchants. April sales tax collections, for example, just came back as revenue to Sullivan County, Kingsport, Bristol, Bluff City and Johnson City — as well as to the three school systems in the county.


A year ago, the 11-month total sales tax revenue for all localities in Sullivan County was about $40.85 million. This year that total is about $43.31 million.


Sales tax revenues are generated when money is spent on goods and services at businesses throughout the county and its cities.


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.


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 the city’s coffers.


From the budget office’s report:


•The city of Kingsport’s non-school share of taxes, budget year to date, is $13.8 million — up about $740,000 from this point last year.


•The Kingsport City Schools system’s share for the 11-month period is $6.3 million, up $551,000 compared to the same period last budget year.


•The city of Bristol’s non-school share for the period is $4.48 million, up $362,000 compared to the same period last year.


•The Bristol City Schools system’s year to date share is about $4 million, up $268,000 compared to the same period last year.


•Sullivan County’s portion for sales taxes generated outside the cities is about $3.14 million, up about $102,000 compared to a year ago.


•The Sullivan County Schools system’s share, since fiscal year 2012 began, is $11.35 million — up about $415,000 compared to the same period last year.


•Bluff City’s year to date share is about $142,232, up $12,781 compared to the same period last year.


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