Sales tax revenue: Mayor’s assistant explains reason for October decline

Friday, November 24, 2017

Berryville saw a significant drop in the revenue collected from the city’s 1 percent sales tax in October.

According to the city financial report, the city received $94,737.76 from the 1 percent sales tax in October 2017, compared with $117,720.37 in October 2016 — a decrease of 19.5 percent.

The Berryville City Council reviewed the financial report at its Tuesday meeting, and city administrative assistant Jay Lee explained what caused the difference in the sales tax collection.

“We inquired about that big difference in sales tax,” Lee said. “The state did an audit and found an overpayment of roughly $18,000, so our actual collection should have been about $18,000 more.”

He said the state adjusted Berryville’s October 2017 sales tax receipt to correct the overpayment.

“I assume it was some large company in town that either made a mistake, requested an audit and got an overpayment adjustment,” Lee said, “or was doing some sort of expansion where they got some sort of credit back. The state never goes into details as far as what happened, but they did tell us it was due to an audit.”

Also at the meeting, Mayor Tim McKinney said he was recently approached by a landowner whose family had given the city one acre of land near the Kings River back in the late 1940s or early 1950s to use as an intake.

“It hasn’t been used since the ’80s,” McKinney said. “The piece of property is still in the family, and the city has no way it can ever use this property. The family was inquiring if they could get it back.”

He said he plans to research the issue further but believes the city should deed the acre of land back to the property owner.

“It was given to the city under goodwill, and the city got a lot of good use out of it,” McKinney said. “I feel like we ought to deed it back to the property owner for a dollar or whatever we have to do. If you all don’t have any objections, I’ll go ahead and start pursuing that.”

The council members expressed their support for the plan.

The council’s next regular meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 11, at City Hall.

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