Fort Smith sales tax revenue up nearly 20% in March report
Fort Smith sales tax revenue had another strong month in March, with revenue nearly 20% higher than the same period last year. The city’s share of Sebastian County sales tax totaled $1.671 million, up 19.74% from March 2021, according to the city’s March sales tax report.
The city’s share of countywide sales tax increased 8.9% in February from February 2021 and 17.44% in January from January 2021. The March report reflects the February transactions. The countywide sales tax generated $5.586 million during the first quarter of 2022, up 15.3% from the $4.844 million generated through March 2021.
The city’s share of the countywide tax is closely monitored as the revenues provide money for the general city budget, with much of that budget paying for police, fire and other essential city services. The tax generated $3.915 million in the first two months of the year, an increase of 13.5% from the $3.449 million generated in January and February 2021.
“Fort Smith is approaching the second anniversary of sales tax collection exceeding budget and previous year collections. The continued strength of the Fort Smith, River Valley and state economies continue to provide higher sales tax collections,” said City Administrator Carl Geffken.
Fort Smith’s 1% road tax – used for maintenance and construction of new streets, bridges and drainage – generated $2.019 million in March, up 16.19% from $1.738 million in March of last year. The budget estimate matched what the city did in March of last year, so revenue is 16.19% higher than the budget estimate.
Collection of this tax in February was 5.52% higher than the budget estimate and January collection was 16.71% higher than January 2021. The 1% road tax generated $6.801 million so far this year, up 12.9% from the $6.023 million generated in the first quarter of 2021.
“March was certainly a substantial increase in sales tax percentage gain for municipal tax and county tax after much weaker gains in February. This is very positive, but with the attention of the Federal Reserve on reducing inflation, we have to consider that a downturn in the economy could occur which could reduce sales tax collections,” said manager Lavon Morton. “Fort Smith may be able to to avoid a slowdown due to our particularly strong growth situation, but I think we have to remain cautious. The Conservative budget we have for 2022 works for Fort Smith. »
In 2021, Fort Smith’s share of the 1% Sebastian County sales tax was $21.055 million, 15.4% higher than 2020 and up 18.14% from the city budget estimate. The 2021 total was $3.23 million more than city officials had planned to spend in the general fund budget. The tax has seen year-over-year gains in recent years, but the 2021 jump was the largest seen in recent years.
The 1% road tax generated $26.134 million in 2021, up 15.4% from 2020 and 17.42% from the budget estimate. The 2021 total was $3.877 million more than city officials budgeted for the road tax program.
PREVIOUS ANNUAL COLLECTION INFO
Collecting Fort Smith’s 1% Street Sales Tax
2021: $26.134 million
2020: $22.66 million
2019: $21.73 million
2018: $21.503 million
2017: $21.204 million
2016: $21.156 million
Fort Smith Portion of 1% Countywide Sales Tax
2021: $21.055 million
2020: $18.246 million
2019: $17.265 million
2018: $17.043 million
2017: $16.691 million
2016: $16.58 million