District credited with revenue boost

Livingston Parish sales tax revenue rose 14 percent in November compared with the same month last year.

The increase was the 25th straight month that tax receipts have gone up, parish records show.

The biggest contributor was the Denham Springs Economic Development District, where Sam’s Club and Bass Pro Shops are located. Tax receipts for the district rose 119 percent compared with the previous year, which was before the Sam’s Club store opened.

Motor vehicle sales also provided local governments with a pleasant surprise, increasing 41 percent compared with November 2011.

The parish’s hotel and motel tax rose 23 percent.

The School Board, Parish Council and Sheriff’s Office all saw their receipts increase 12 percent compared with the previous year, records show.

Those numbers are great to have going into the Christmas season, said Mike Curtis, who heads the parish’s sales tax collection program.

Curtis said he doesn’t expect motor vehicle sales to continue at that rate, but said he expects other retail numbers to remain high through the rest of the year and into 2013.

The November collections from retailers by the parish represent sales that occurred in October.

The Denham Springs Economic District, which also saw its sales tax collections rise 73 percent in October from September sales, is drawing new dollars from Baton Rouge shoppers, Curtis said.

Denham Springs didn’t do as well as the district or the rest of the parish. It showed only a 1 percent increased compared with November 2011.

Walker showed a 2 percent increase, Albany had a 10 percent increase, the town of Livingston had an 11 percent increase and Springfield had a 35 percent increase.

The sales-tax collections across the parish totaled more than $6.1 million for November, compared with less than $5.3 million in November 2011, according to parish records.