Don't get spooked by Erie County’s latest sales tax collection.
Shoppers purchasing taxable goods in Erie County this past October generated about $1.48 million in local sales tax income.
Erie County officials just finalized October’s collection in January.
The $1.48 million represents almost a 50 percent gain compared to the collection in October 2012.
The drastic increase resulted from county commissioners in July voting to temporarily increase the local sales tax rate, from 1 percent to 1.5 percent, from October 2013 through October 2014.
The current sales tax rate now totals 7.25 percent, with the state obtaining the remaining 5.75 percent.
Before approving an increase, county commissioners repeatedly informed community members and entrepreneurs of how they’ll spend this extra tax money.
The estimated $7.2 million derived from a one-half percent increase will be used to fund infrastructure improvements around Erie County. Some places expected to receive upgrades: the Erie County Courthouse, The Meadows at Osborn Park and Erie County Job and Family Services.
Despite the injection of income, this amount still fell about 4 percent short of what county officials projected they’d receive. Finance workers projected Erie County would collect $1.54 million in October 2013.
“Even though the collection is slightly down, it’s probably just a timing issue with some people paying late,” Erie County commissioner Pat Shenigo said.
Erie County 2014 sales tax income
• Actual collection to date: $1.48 million
• Budgeted amount to date: $1.53 million
• Up or down: Down $52,000
• Year-end goal: $22 million
Note: Erie County officials finalize sales tax figures three months after the actual collection. For instance, the October collection was finalized in January. All figures rounded.
Source: Erie County finance department