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Local sales tax figures show year of growth

A Colorado Department of Revenue report released last week indicates the sales tax collected by Archuleta County and the Town of Pagosa Springs for June 2012 was $637,361.43, which is down $3,971.16 or .62 percent compared to June of last year; however, the year-to-date sales tax revenue is up .93 percent over 2011.

These are the revised numbers received by The SUN on Aug. 12, and not quite as alarming as the first report received on Aug. 9. The number was originally $618,359.94, which is down $22,972.65 or 3.58 percent for the same comparison, which threw the year-to-date number down to only a .26-percent increase over 2011.

The confusion came about because there was a difference between what the county actually received in sales tax and what was reported by CDR. Diane Sorensen, finance director for Archuleta County, gave credit for catching this error to Pagosa Springs Town Clerk April Hessman.

The CDR report has since been updated and corrected, and Sorensen vows in the future to tie the amount in the report she receives from CDR to the amount actually received by the county treasurer to provide accurate reporting.

Breaking it down by category, retail trade, which is the biggest source of revenue, was $287,247 —$18,997 over last year and up 7.1 percent from last June’s $268,250.

The second largest sector, accommodations and food, brought in $113,677 worth of tax revenue in June 2012, compared to $104,625 last year, an increase of $9,052 or 8.7 percent.

A number of sectors showed minor fluctuations, some up and some down, but with no real change compared to last year. These include manufacturing, wholesale trade and the information industry.

However, a number of the medium-sized business sectors, especially construction and real estate, showed noteworthy improvement, and could be an indication of changes in the local economy.

Real estate brought in $20,026 worth of tax revenue in June 2012, compared to $13,817 last year, an increase of $6,209 or 45 percent. Construction collected $15,054 worth of tax revenue in June 2012, compared to $9,783 last year, an increase of $5,271 or 54 percent. Finally, mining collected $33,010 worth of tax revenue in June 2012, compared to only $6,048 last year, a significant increase of $26,962 or 446 percent.

Some sectors, though very small in the overall scheme of things, also showed significant growth and may reflect the birth of new businesses over the last year, namely the health care and the educational services industries.

Health care rose from only $15 worth of tax revenue in June 2011 to $571 this year, an increase of $556 or 3707 percent, and educational services went from $401 to $1,038, up $637 or 159 percent.

As has been pointed out in an earlier SUN article by Jim McQuiggin, the one sector that has thrown a wrench into the system is transportation and warehousing, which shows $72,495 for last year, but only $556 for this year. This is why May and June are the only down months this year, but this anomaly is expected to disappear next month since there were no revenues from transportation and warehousing in July 2011.

ed.fincher@pagosasun.com

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