Jan 25, 2014 19:41 EBR spending down in November EBR spending down in November Timothy Boone| firstname.lastname@example.org Jan. 25, 2014 Comments Spending in East Baton Rouge Parish by consumers and businesses dropped by 2.5 percent in November from a year ago. Sales tax collection figures released by the city-parish Finance Department show businesses and consumers spent $655.6 million in November. Sales were up in several categories, including retail trade and food stores, which accounts for nearly 55 percent of all collections in the parish. Manufacturing collections were down nearly 30 percent when compared against November 2012. The figures do not include vehicle sales, which are generally examined separately when looking at spending as an economic indicator. Spending outside the city limits, which includes the Mall of Louisiana and big-box retailers on Siegen Lane, was down 8.3 percent in November to $304.9 million. Spending, excluding vehicles, within the city limits was up 3.1 percent in November to $350.7 million. This includes activity at Cortana Mall and on College Drive. Vehicle sales were up 3 percent from the year before, increasing to $51.7 million. Auto sales are up nearly 12 percent through the first 11 months of the year. For the first 11 months of 2013, spending in the parish, excluding vehicles, is down 0.1 percent to $7.23 billion. Spending inside the city limits is up 0.8 percent to nearly $3.85 billion. Spending outside the city limits has fallen by 1.1 percent to $3.39 billion. Officials have said this year’s figures are competing against year-ago numbers that were buoyed by a national bowling tournament, which boosted key segments from February through July last year. Tax collections for the city-parish, which include vehicle sales, were down 2.1 percent in November to $14.1 million. For the year, the city-parish has collected $157.9 million, up 0.8 percent.