Port Orchard’s finances on track
By BRETT CIHON
Port Orchard Independent Staff Writer
July 26, 2012 · 4:41 PM
Port Orchard collected slightly more sales tax revenue than anticipated in May, continuing a trend of tax revenues that keep pace with the city’s 2012 revenue projections.
The city’s finance committee met June 18 at MoonDogs, Too to discuss tax collections year-to-date.
City treasurer Allan Martin also outlined revenue shortfalls, unanticipated expenses and additional revenues collected so far this year during a semi-annual finance review at the meeting.
Shortfalls and additional revenue streams fell roughly in line, spurring the finance committee to agree things were moving about as expected for a city of nearly 12,000 people.
“Caution is the watch word moving forward,” Martin said.
The city collected more than $220,000 in sales tax from the state in May, up 1.7 percent from the $217,000 expected. A strong May helped the city continue to make up financial ground lost in first three months of the year, when tax collections fell below what was expected. The city has collected $2,449.51, or two-tenths of 1 percent, more than expected for this time of the year.
Martin said state and nationwide car sales are up, perhaps contributing to the boost in sales tax revenues. AutoNation, Inc., the nation’s largest car dealership chain, saw income increase 9.3 percent in the second quarter of 2012, according to the Associated Press.
Port Orchard saw higher than expected revenues from property tax collection, building and planning fees, business licensing fees and franchise taxes. The city collected $138,784.72 in additional revenue. However, property tax shortfalls and unanticipated expenses, such as more fuel consumed by police cars and an $84,846 storm drainage refund from the city, cost $134,072.
City council member Rob Putaansuu said while the city is on track fiscally, attention must continue to be paid toward controlling excess expenses.
“We are trending slightly better than expected, but need to continue to control our expenses,” he said.
Contact Port Orchard Independent Staff Writer Brett Cihon at firstname.lastname@example.org or 360-876-4414.