At the halfway point of 2019, Booneville’s one percent sales tax receipts are not only on pace to show an increase over the previous year for the sixth straight year, they are also on pace to top $700,000.
The sales tax collection remitted to the city last week from State Treasurer Dennis Milligan’s office in Little Rock was $60,264.26, which brings the six month total to $353,933.06.
That’s just under $16,000 — 4.7 percent — more than the first half of 2018.
In the aftermath of the Cargill fire in 2008 tax collections hovered around the $500,000 mark before the opening of a Walmart Supercenter pushed the total to over $600,000 in 2016, the store’s first full year of operation.
While the monthly total for June is actually a drop of almost $4,000, 6.2 percent from May, it is over $6,000, or 11.2 percent, more than June of 2018.
The sales tax was approved by city voters for a fourth five-year period in 2015. City officials have started looking into the process to ask voters to renew the tax for a fifth term.
Under the current distribution formula a city improvement account receives 30 percent of the collections and the police department another 22 percent. The fire department and Area Agency/Senior Center get 10 percent each; the airport 7 percent; the street department, parks commission and animal control 5 percent each; the BDC/Chamber 4 percent and the Oak Hill Cemetery fund 2 percent.
In addition to the two one percent sales taxes collected by the City of Booneville — one is dedicated to the operation of Mercy Hospital here — purchases in the city are subjected to two cents on the dollar for Logan County.
One half cent was approved in 2016 to build and equip with another half cent approved to at the same time to maintain a new jail in the county.
Construction costs of the facility was covered by two bond issues totalling $12.1 million.
With $101,598.52 remitted to the county in June, the taxes have taken in more than $2.63 million to date. In 2019 the tax was taken in $575,630.46, which is an increase of 3.2 percent over the firs half of 2018.
Construction of the jail began in December of 2017 and the new jail is now open — prisoners were moved into the cells on June 19.