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Sales tax continues decline

Thursday, December 10, 2009 by Austin Monitor

Austin’s sales tax continued to fall in the month of October, according to figures put out by the State of Texas and passed on by the city’s Chief Financial Officer Leslie Browder. October’s revenues were $11.2 million compared to $12.2 million for the same month last year, a decrease of 8.4 percent.


October’s indicators are important, if mostly symbolically, because it represents the first month of FY 2010. Sales tax revenues fell 9.5 percent overall for FY 2009.


Browder said 19 of Texas 20 largest cities saw declining sales tax revenue this month, with Houston and Fort Worth experiencing the steepest drops at 16.9 percent and 17.3 percent respectively. Sales tax revenues for Dallas fell only 5.3 percent, she said, while San Antonio saw a 12.5 percent decline.


“Overall, the Austin/San Marcos MSA was down 10.6% this month. Round Rock was down by 21.8% for the month,” Browder said. 


Shopping Mecca San Marcos saw a decrease of 5.2 percent in October, while Sunset Valley was up by 6.4 percent. However, Browder cautions that the suburb “would have seen a decrease had it not been for a significant positive audit adjustment this month compared to the same period last year.” Also, sales tax collections in Bee Cave were down 10.5 percent.


Capital Metro most closely mirrored Austin, down by 7.9 percent for the month.

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