Most Angelina Cities Report Higher Sales Tax Collections
Sales tax revenues are a clear indicator of the strength of local and state economies. High revenues mean people are spending money and feel confident about their financial situation. Low revenues mean the opposite.
Most Angelina County cities saw an increase in sales tax revenue in February. Only Burke and Diboll had lower revenues. Even so, the countywide total of sales tax revenue was up 37 and a half percent from February of last year.
Angelina County auditor Eddie Gray says he can't explain an increase that big. “Obviously this is out of our control, and I don’t know why February would be unusually higher. I don’t see the economy improving 37 percent, but there could be a number of factors.”
Lufkin's revenues were up not quite 9 percent. Zavalla had the biggest increase at about 11 percent. Burke's total was down 34 percent and Diboll fell about half a percentage point.
State Comptroller Susan Combs says the state’s sales tax revenue has increased for 12 straight months. So far this year, total monthly sales tax allocations to local governments are up 7.5 percent compared to a year ago.
Higher state sales tax revenues also mean more money for local governments, and that's good news in Lufkin. The city's one percent share of the state sales tax finances two thirds of the entire Lufkin city budget.