Douglas posts 5 percent sales tax increase in May |

Douglas posts 5 percent sales tax increase in May

by Geoff Dornan

General merchandise stores, including Douglas County’s two Walmarts, posted a 21 percent increase in taxable sales during the month of May, continuing a streak into its fourth month.

With just one more month left in the fiscal year, Douglas County merchants were ahead 6.5 percent for the year, raking in $539.98 million.

May saw a 5 percent increase over the same month in 2012 with $45.58 million.

Four of the county’s top five categories posted increases during may, including food services and drinking places, the county’s largest category, with $9.8 million.

General merchandise stores brought in $7.6 million in taxable sales during the month.

Building materials and garden equipment was up 13.4 percent to $5.5 million, wholesalers of durable goods were up 11 percent to $2.85 million.

The fifth category, food and beverage stores were down 11.5 percent to $2.7 million.

Statewide taxable sales were up 6.1 percent in May to a total of more than $3.9 billion

Altogether, seven of Nevada’s small counties reported strong double-digit gains in May.

The strongest was Churchill County with $35.7 million in taxable sales — up 60 percent over the same month last year.

The vast majority of that increase was in the utilities category, which grew from $1.9 million a year earlier to $10.3 million.

But related categories including building construction, specialty trade contractors, electrical equipment manufacturers and wholesale durable goods also logged large gains.

In Lyon County, the growth was 27.8 percent to a total of just over $33 million.

Heavy construction, building supplies, auto sales and the food and beverage categories all contributed substantially to the gain.

Clark County reported a 4.7 percent increase to $2.8 billion with strong performances in several building trades and construction categories as well as auto sales.

Washoe had an 8 percent gain to $501 million in May.

Like Clark, Washoe had strong performances in a variety of construction categories, a 13 percent gain in auto sales.

Gross revenue collections for May were $308.1 million, a 6.6 percent increase over the previous May.

The General Fund portion of that, which goes to the state, was $78.1 million — a 7.27 percent increase.

That puts the general fund portion just under a half percent ahead of the projections made by the Economic Forum and used to build the state budget.