Eagle sales tax collections jump during the first half of this year
EAGLE — The town of Eagle has recorded a 13 percent increase in sales tax revenues during the first six months of 2016 compared to the same period in 2015.
That’s very good news for the town, which had anticipated a 5 percent increase in sales tax collections when it developed its budget for the year. Additionally, the news is particularly welcome as Eagle looks to the bond issue approved by the voters early this year to finance construction of the Eagle River Park project.
“It’s a wonderful uptick,” said Eagle Mayor Anne McKibbin. “It means we are not quite as constrained as we have been, but we won’t be going wild either.”
McKibbin noted that Eagle has been in belt-tightening budget mode since the national economic downturn in 2008. As a result, the town has delayed projects and staffing decisions until revenues rose.
“Now we will have some room to do some things in the budget — staffing, projects and things like that. We will take a look at things that have been backlogged.”
The town’s sales tax collections totaled $2,153,501 from January though June of this year. That compares to collections of $1,897,798 during the first six months of 2015. The 2015 number was an 11 percent increase over the same period of 2014. Eagle ended 2015 with a 10 percent jump in overall sales tax collections.
According to the six-month sales tax report, food sales comprise the largest percentage of sales tax collections, approximately $550,000 of the total. Restaurant and bar business totaled about $395,000 in sales tax while retail sales tallied approximately $300,000. Liquor stores generated approximately $117,000 in sales tax while lodging receipts topped $169,000.
Building and construction materials sales in Eagle have been steadily climbing during the past few years, but they still lag far below their 2008 levels. So far this year, building materials sales tax receipts total nearly $112,000 compared to approximately $82,000 in 2015.
Collections by area
When divided by district, the Market Street area, which is home to Eagle’s largest business — City Market — is the leader. The Market Street area, which includes the supermarket, gas stations, motels and other businesses, saw an 11 percent increase in sales tax collections. Market Street businesses sales tax collections grew from $563,514 during the first half of 2015 to $632,056 during the first half of 2016.
Eagle Town Clerk Jenny Rakow said the town had anticipated flat sales in the area as City Market undergoes a large remodeling project.
Chambers Avenue is the next highest sales tax collections area, and businesses in that neighborhood saw a 28 percent increase in collections during 2015 — from $448,707 last year to $462,023 to date in 2016.
Downtown Eagle saw the largest percentage increase in sales tax collections to date this year, a 38 percent jump from $83,525 in 2015 to $139,214 in 2016. The U.S. Highway 6 corridor sales tax collections jumped 27 percent from $71,928 last year to $97,806 this year. The Eagle Ranch area saw a modest 2 percent increase, from $68,490 in 2015 to $69,876 in 2016.