SEGUIN — Sales tax revenues continue to show the Eagle Ford Impact.
Texas Comptroller Susan Combs said state sales tax revenue in June was $2.17 billion, up 9.1 percent compared to June 2012.
“Growth in sales tax receipts was led by business sectors such as manufacturing and construction,” Combs said. “Remittances from the oil and natural gas industry remain strong while sales tax revenue was also notable for restaurants, a consumer sector.”
Combs sent cities, counties, transit systems and special purpose taxing districts their July local sales tax allocations totaling $578.3 million, up 8.1 percent compared to July 2012. Local sales tax allocations remitted in July represent sales made in May.
The city of Seguin was sent a July allocation of $503,364, down almost 13.2 percent from its July 2012 allocation of $579,800.
While the city’s most recent payment showed a decrease from the previous year, Seguin’s sales tax allocations for the year-to-date total $4.09 million, up 9.3 percent from $3.74 million at the same point in 2012.
“I think we’re still doing fairly well,” said Kyle Kramm, assistant director of economic development for the city of Seguin.
Kramm said retail sales were exceptionally strong in May 2012 and represented a significant increase over retail sales for May 2011; it was not unexpected for sales in May 2013 to fall short of the previous year’s increase.
Despite the dropoff in May, the city’s allocations so far in 2013 continue to run almost 10 percent ahead of the previous year’s.
Kramm attributes the city’s strong retail sales to new stores, new housing, increased employment at local industries such as Caterpillar and Continental and increased economic activity in the oil and gas industry.
“The Eagle Ford Shale keeps getting larger,” Kramm said, noting that the economic development office has been receiving lots of inquiries from oilfield service companies, many of them asking about housing for their employees.
“We’ve got a lot of the amenities the smaller towns don’t offer, and they’re able to get to the work sites within an hour or two,” Kramm said.
He said retail sales in the city will get even stronger in the near future. mentioning the new Walmart store and the NewQuest shopping center, both being developed near the intersection of State Highway 46 and Interstate 10.
“I think Seguin is going to see some good things coming in the next year or so,” Kramm said.
While Seguin saw a drop in its July allocation, there was no coresponding decrease for Guadalupe County. The county’s July rebate amounted to $525,020, up 6.8 percent from the allocation of $491,571 in July 2012.
So far this year, Guadalupe County’s sales tax allocations total more than $3.78 million, up 16.6 percent from $3.24 million at the same point in 2012.
Neighboring Gonzales County will get a July allocation for $303,329, up 27 percent from the same period last year. However, for this year so far, Gonzales County’s sales tax rebates total slightly less than $1.8 million, up only 2.23 percent.
Counties in the Eagle Ford Shale have seen sharper increases than elsewhere in the state. Karnes County’s July allocation was up 58.5 percent and its year-to-date allocations total $5.6 million, up 55.2 percent.
Of the state’s 254 counties, only 124 receive sales tax rebates. Neighboring Wilson County, for example, does not levy a sales tax. DeWitt County, booming with activity in the Eagle Ford Shale, also is among counties not levying a countywide sales tax.