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Kyle collects highest sales tax payment ever: Most Hays County cities see large May revenue jumps

By Andy Sevilla

Kyle received more than half-a-million dollars in sales tax revenue this month, the highest allocation ever received by the city. 

“We have expectations of sales tax growth, and when those numbers are blown away it’s just incredible,” said outgoing Kyle Mayor Lucy Johnson, who has seen sales tax collections more than double since first taking office as a council member in 2008.

The Texas Comptroller’s Office returned $505,339 to Kyle in sales tax revenues this month, up 22 percent over the city’s collections of $413,730 for May 2013.

“We have been fortunate to have seen consistent positive growth in sales tax revenues for sometime, however, recent months have been even more impressive,” said Kyle Economic Development Director Diana Blank. “We have reported double digit growth in sales tax revenues for the past 10 years with the exception of one year, which was still up 8.79 percent.”

Since January, Kyle collected $1.95 million in sales tax revenue, compared to $1.69 million at this time last year.

Since at least 2005, Kyle’s annual sales tax collections have increased year over year, with the city collecting just over $4 million in fiscal year 2013. With four months left in the current fiscal year, Kyle already topped the $3 million mark, and is on trend to surpass last fiscal year’s collections, continuing its growth trajectory.

“Indications show that the economy is coming back strong and these growth numbers definitely support that,” Blank said. “People are spending more money, have more new businesses giving them more local options to choose from and developers and investors are moving forward in a strong growth mode.”

May sales tax figures represent monthly sales made in March, as well as January, February and March sales made by business that report tax quarterly.

Kyle’s neighbor to the north also experienced large growth in sales tax revenue this month when compared to May 2013. Buda took in $464,893 in revenue, up 34 percent over its $346,543 collection for the same month last year.

From January through May, Buda received close to $2 million in sales tax collections, a near 16 percent hike over the $1.72 million the city received over the same period last year.

A tucked away town in eastern Hays County, Uhland, saw the largest percentage growth of any other Hays County city this month. 

Uhland received $9,095 in sales tax collections, a 66 percent climb over the $5,470 it received in revenue during the same month last year. 

Uhland has received slightly more than $40,000 in sales tax collections this calendar year-to-date, a 51.84 percent hike to the $26,400 it received from January through May last year.

Niederwald collected $1,888 in sales tax collections this month, a 6.87 percent jump over the $1,767 it received for May 2013. So far this year, Niederwald has been allocated $8,867, roughly $6,000 more than it received during the same period last year.

In western Hays County, Wimberley collected $76,400 this month, an 8.17 percent increase over its $70,625 allocation for May 2013. From January through May, Wimberley collected nearly $284,000, a 6.24 percent jump over its allocations during the same months last year.

Dripping Springs received a little more than $142,000 for May, a 3.5 percent increase over its $137,292 collection in the same month last year. So far this year, Dripping Springs has collected $597,961 in sales tax revenue, an 8.4 percent hike over its $551,590 allocation during the same months in 2013.

Hays County’s largest city, San Marcos, was the lone municipality in the county to see a decrease in its revenue this month, when compared to May last year.

San Marcos collected $2.05 million in sales tax revenue for May, a 9.4 percent decrease from its $2.66 million collection in the same month last year.

Despite the depreciation in May revenue however, San Marcos still remains on top with its total collections so far this year, when compared to its collections from January through May last year.

In the first five months of 2014, San Marcos collected $10.34 million, a 2.31 percent mark above its $10.11 collections during the same months last year.

The county government also received less revenue this month, when compared to May last year. Hays County took in $1.26 million in sales tax collections for May, a less than one-percent decrease over its $1.27 million allocation for the same month last year.

Year-to-date, Hays County collected $5.9 million — 5.44 percent more than its collection during the same period in 2013.

Statewide, May revenues marked 49 consecutive months of growth in sales tax collections, according to Texas Comptroller Susan Combs.

“Growth in sales tax revenue was spurred by increases in the telecommunications sector and services sector,” Combs said in a statement. “Increased business spending in the wholesale trade sector also contributed to the latest monthly gain.”

This month, Combs will send cities, counties, transit systems and special purpose taxing districts $716 million in local sales tax allocations, up 7.1 percent compared to May 2013. 

In her March State of the City Address, Johnson said at least 14 new businesses were planning openings in Kyle, including Walmart, some eateries, and a large all-inclusive movie theater featuring 11 movie screens, an arcade, restaurant and bar. 

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