Friday, January 9, 2009

Ketchum LOT down 14 percent

Express Staff Writer

The first quarter of Ketchum's local option-tax receipts are down 14 percent compared to last year.

Tax revenue for the months September through November showed that of the five revenue streams—retail sales, liquor, lodging, building materials and condominiums—only the last category saw a year-over-year increase.

Up 3 percent, the condo gains were negated by significant decreases in the other categories.

Ketchum imposes a 2 percent sales tax on lodging and by-the-glass liquor sales, and a 1 percent tax on retail sales and building materials, with the goal of offsetting the impacts of tourism on city services and infrastructure.

Despite a 21 percent increase in liquor receipts November 2008 compared to the previous year, liquor tax revenue saw nearly an 11 percent decrease over the first quarter.

Building materials have fallen sharply over these three months as a result of the economy's crash and associated drop in new home construction. October and November witnessed declines of 22 and 27 percent, respectively.

Out of a total $89,275 taken in by the LOT in November, retail receipts made up the majority with $53,540, though this category was down nearly 30 percent from last year.

So far, the city has taken in $361,858, which is $96,680 less than was budgeted at the beginning of the fiscal year.

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