Building-use tax boosts Steamboat's July tax collections

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— After three straight months of decline, July building-use tax collections saw a 262 percent increase compared with July 2011, according to a preliminary July tax revenue report released Tuesday by the city of Steamboat Springs.

The tax had seen an increase in only one other month this year: March saw $23,676 in collections compared with $7,188 in March 2011 for an increase of nearly 230 percent.

The tax revenue fluctuates monthly depending on how many building permits are issued, how many use tax audits are completed and the size and number of developments in the city, according to a news release from the city.

Despite the July increase, year-to-date building-use tax collections remain down more than 46 percent.

In other tax categories in July, general sales tax collections saw a slight decrease (0.05 percent) but remain up 1.99 percent year-to-date. July is the second month this year that saw a decrease in general sales tax revenue. March experienced a 5 percent decrease compared with 2011.

Accommodations tax collections were up nearly 9 percent in July compared with July 2011, but the tax remains down less than half a percent year-to-date.

The air service tax collected $94,670 in July, putting collections at $600,679 for the year. The tax, which was passed by Steamboat voters in November, is dedicated to funding direct ski season jet flights into Yampa Valley Regional Airport.

General sales tax collections are broken down by category, where miscellaneous retail and restaurants saw small decreases of 4 percent or less, while lodging and amenities saw the largest increase at nearly 10 percent, followed by sporting goods, utilities and liquor stores.

By sales tax area, the ski base area saw the largest increase at more than 13 percent. The U.S. Highway 40 corridor also saw an increase at nearly 3 percent, but all other areas — including downtown, regional and west Steamboat — saw decreases of 6 to 9 percent.

The preliminary July numbers are subject to change after the final report is released by the city later this month.

Preliminary July 2012 sales tax revenues

To reach Nicole Miller, call 970-871-4246 or email nmiller@SteamboatToday.com

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