A strong fourth quarter turned what city officials expected would be a flat year for sales tax revenue into one with more than 2 percent annual growth when compared to the previous year.
Data compiled by the Oklahoma Tax Commission show the city’s share of sales tax revenue disbursed this month totaled $2.12 million. That represents a 13.14 percent, or $246,030, increase from the $1.87 million disbursed to the city in June 2018.
June disbursements primarily represent local sales tax collected from April business activity. Totals include taxes collected on actual sales reported by businesses required to file electronically from April 16 to April 30 and estimated sales from May 1 through May 15.
The state agency disbursed $158.18 million in sales tax revenue to municipalities statewide — that was up $8.67 million, or 6.55 percent, from the $149.51 million disbursed in June 2018. Counties that assess a sales tax shared disbursements totaling $27.89 million and use tax revenue totaling more than $4.1 million.
Muskogee County's share of the sales tax revenue totaled $432,398, up 11.48 percent from the $387,883 it received in June 2018. The June disbursement of use tax to Muskogee County coffers totaled $60,807, up 86.18 percent from the $28,147 deposited a year ago.
City Manager Mike Miller said "solid sales tax numbers" recorded during the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2019 were "better than we anticipated." Miller said he has hopes the growing economy will continue into the next fiscal year.
"What we have seen coming, which is good economic development, showed up last month," Miller said, pointing to the sales tax deposits as evidence. "We know good things are happening in Muskogee, and as we get more details of the sales tax we will be able to identify something more specific."
Muskogee’s sales tax receipts for the fiscal year 2019, which ends June 30, totaled nearly $24.45 million. That represents a year-to-date increase of $522,886, or 2.18 percent, from the nearly $23.93 million deposited into city coffers during the same period a year ago.
The city realized an 88.77 percent increase in its June use tax collections when compared to the same month a year ago. The commission’s most recent report shows use tax revenue disbursed this month to the city of Muskogee totaled $282,488, up $132,837 from the $149,651 deposited in June 2018.
Use tax revenue is generated primarily by purchases of out-of-state goods for in-state use or consumption. City councilors direct up to $1.2 million of the city’s 4 percent use tax annually toward the city's economic development efforts.
Revenue from the 4 percent municipal sales tax — along with tobacco and franchise taxes — make up just more than half of the city’s general fund. City councilors approved a budget for fiscal year 2020 with general fund totaling that totals nearly $34.4 million.