The Desert IndependentTM

Serving Blythe and the Desert Regions of the Southwest Since 2001


Encouraging News Regarding Sales Tax Revenue

By Robert Winkler
The Desert Independent

January 13, 2012

BLYTHE, Calif City officials met earlier this week with its sales tax consultant and heard encouraging news about the local economy. The quarterly meeting covered the third quarter of 2011 which included the months of July, August, and September. Compared to the same period of the previous year, the City's sales tax revenue was up 11.6% and was substantially higher than the statewide increase of 8.6%.

The City's increase also compares very favorably to many other agencies in Riverside County. Out of 28 total agencies, which includes all 27 cities and the unincorporated areas of the county, Blythe's increase ranked an astounding 7th. Coming in first, due in large part to annexation, was the City of Desert Hot Springs. Bringing up the rear were Canyon Lake and the newly incorporated City of Eastvale.

Said Mayor Oscar Galvan, "This really is encouraging news as it says to me that, although some businesses continue to struggle through the poor economy, commerce in Blythe seems to be moving in the right direction.

Councilman Joey DeConinck added, "We keep hearing that this town is dying and nothing is happening but this information clearly shows that that perception is incorrect. It is nice to see that our businesses are generating more sales tax revenue than in the recent past.

According to the consultant, much of the statewide increase can be attributed to higher fuel prices, however sales of new autos, consumer goods, fast food, and full service restaurants also exhibited "solid growth.

For fiscal year 2012-2013, which begins July 1, 2012, the consultant is estimating a sales tax increase for the City of nearly $50,000 over the current fiscal year. The consultant cautioned, however, that although growth should continue into next year fiscal year, it is likely to slow somewhat.

The next quarterly meeting with the tax consultant, to be conducted later this spring, will focus on the 4th quarter of 2011 and will include sales during the holiday shopping season.

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