Sales tax collections remain strong for the town of Jackson and Teton County as the end of the fiscal year nears.
The most recent financial report shows collections up 9.7 percent over last year with just one month remaining in the budget year.
The town has added $10.18 million to its coffers since the beginning of the 2013-14 fiscal year in July. That’s $898,000 more than during the same period in the 2012-13 fiscal year.
The total pushes the town close to its budget projections of $10.28 million in sales tax revenue.
With one month left in the fiscal year, collections are on track to significantly surpass the town’s budgeted amount.
The most recent sales tax receipts for Teton County are not available yet, but the county’s collections generally trend in the same direction as the town’s because of the way sales tax money is distributed.
Collections in Jackson Hole are sent to the state, which keeps some of the money and sends the rest back to local governments. Teton County keeps 55 percent of that, while the town of Jackson gets 45 percent.
The continued growth of sales tax revenue should be relatively good news for the town and county. Both governments are attempting to draft balanced budgets for the next fiscal year, which begins in July.
The town in particular could use the extra help, as the Budge Drive slide has eaten away its reserves.
The Jackson Town Council approved $750,000 to be spent on mitigation efforts, but the total cost of work on the slide is expected to exceed that.
Collections are on track to come in near pre-recession levels. The town pulled in a total of $10.56 million during the 2008-09 fiscal year. The following year collections plummeted to $9.1 million. Tax receipts have slowly picked up since then.
Still, government officials have pointed out that while sales tax revenue may be rebounding, the demand for government services has continued to increase, too.
Sales tax is a crucial part of the town’s income. The revenue makes up about two-thirds of the municipality’s general fund, which pays for day-to-day operations such as the police department and public works.
The town and county’s sales tax income comes from a 4 percent tax levied by the state and another 1 percent levied locally.
There is another optional 1 percent sales tax imposed when voters approve it for special capital projects. It is commonly referred to as the specific purpose excise tax.
A number of projects to be so funded will be on the primary elections ballot in August.