Sales tax returns are in for July, the highest-earning month of the year in Buena Vista, with receipts rising 8.85% over the same month in 2019.

Sales tax returns remitted to the town of Buena Vista from the Colorado Department of Revenue show that town businesses generated $436,263 in sales tax revenue in July this year, up from $400,771 in July 2019.

That’s 4.67% over the budgeted revenue for July 2020, said town treasurer Michelle Stoke in a report to the board of trustees.

Between 2018 and 2019, sales tax revenue earned in July grew by 15.9%. Between 2017 and 2018, revenue grew by 9.4%.

Local businesses generated 86% of the total returns for July, with 14% coming from remote sellers – purchases made in BV from businesses without a physical; presence in the area.

That proportion is down from July 2019, when local business accounted for 91% of total revenue earned in that month.

In dollars, local businesses generated $301,877 in sales tax revenue for the town, down 1.7% from that month last year when $307,129 was generated locally.

This continues a trend – while overall sales tax returns have been rising month after month thus far in spite of concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic’s potential effects on the economy – the tax revenue that local businesses are generating has decreased compared to last year in every month of 2020 except January and February.

The town began recording remote sales taxes in 2019 following Colorado legislation that remitted sales tax from online sales to the place of purchase.

July’s local business returns show the most slight decrease so far this year. In March, local sales tax revenue was down by 25.9%. In June, those numbers were down by 3.2%.

In terms of the overall revenues that fund the town’s public operations, however, it’s still been nearly 2 years since BV recorded a decrease in sales tax returns month over month.

Year to date, revenues are up in 2020 over 2019 by 17.56% and 13.04% over the budgeted revenue for that 7-month period.

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