March shows growth in sales tax collections in Steamboat
May 2, 2013
Steamboat Springs — Sales tax collections in Steamboat Springs increased in March, but the growth slowed dramatically from January and February of this year, when it neared double digits.
The city collected $2,190,744 in March compared with $2,125,215 in March 2012, an increase of 3.1 percent, according to a preliminary report released Wednesday by the city. Year-to-date sales tax collections are up 6.5 percent compared with the first three months of 2012, with $6,022,862 collected this year.
By sales tax category, sporting goods showed the most growth by percentage at 16.2 percent. Sporting goods also saw some of the largest growth in January at 17.3 percent and February at 13.6 percent compared with the same months in 2012. Also showing increased collections were lodging and amenities (5.8 percent), restaurants (4.3 percent) and liquor stores (1.3 percent). Marking the first declines in collections by any sales tax category this year were utilities (down 2.7 percent) and miscellaneous retail (down 1.4 percent).
By sales tax area, the base area showed the only growth at 10.3 percent, perhaps boosted by snowfall that totaled 44.75 inches at Steamboat Ski Area compared with the March 2012 snowfall of 21 inches — the lowest snow total for the month on records dating to 1980. Remaining essentially flat were west Steamboat (0.02 percent), downtown (down 0.3 percent) and the U.S. Highway 40 corridor (down 0.5 percent). Regional collections showed a decrease of 3.6 percent.
In other tax categories, the city collected $18,378 in building-use taxes, a decrease of 22 percent compared with March 2012. Despite the decline, year-to-date collections remain up 56 percent thanks to a 345 percent increase in collections in January compared with the same month in 2012, when the city posted a net loss of $5,927.
Accommodations tax collections increased 6.3 percent in March. The city has collected $359,704 year to date, an 8.5 increase from the first three months of 2012. Money collected by the tax goes to Haymaker Golf Course through the end of the year, and a committee recently recommended 90 percent of the tax benefit the Steamboat Springs Trails Alliance beginning in 2014. The Trails Alliance plans to use the tax revenue to transform the city into a world-class biking and hiking destination. The Steamboat Springs City Council will discuss the recommendation at its May 21 meeting.
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Local marketing district tax collections increased 14.4 percent in March for year-to-date collections of $376,137, an increase of 24.1 percent from 2012. The tax that is dedicated to funding direct ski season jet flights into Yampa Valley Regional Airport was approved by voters in November 2011 and first was collected in January 2012.
To reach Nicole Miller, call 970-871-4246 or email nmiller@SteamboatToday.com