Tulsa, OK – For the first time in 14 months, Tulsa's sales tax collections increased compared to the same period last year, although collections since the beginning of the fiscal year are still below last year's totals.
The report the City received from the Oklahoma Tax Commission said that sales tax collections from mid-March to mid-April totaled $16,682,891, a 3.7 percent increase over the $16,085,995 collected for the same period in 2009
That amount is also 11.5 percent above revised budget estimate for the period. The estimate was $14,963,000.
For the fiscal year to date, the City has collected $178,962,280. For the same period last year collections totaled $197,615,811. For the fiscal year, collections are down by 9.4 percent, or $18.65 million.
Use tax collections for the one-month period totaled $1,357,216, down 2.3 percent from the $1,388,745 collected mid-March through mid-April last year. For the year to date, use tax collections are down by 13 percent, or $2,172,840, compared to the previous year.
Use taxes are collected from businesses on purchases of equipment from out-of-state vendors.
"Since this is the first time in 14 months that we have seen an increase in sales tax collections over last year, we are proceeding cautiously, said Mayor Dewey Bartlett. "We need to see several months of consistent improvements in sales tax collections before we can truly say that we have turned the corner."
"We hope the trend continues, we must remain cautious and manage the city's resources wisely," Bartlett said. "The budget we presented to the City Council last week, if approved, keeps the City on a conservative financial footing. We continue to look at ways to reduce costs, deliver services more efficiently and identify additional revenue sources so that we can restore services to Tulsans," the mayor added.
The City has reduced operating expenses in the general fund by about $25 million this fiscal year, including reductions of $7.5 million since February.