Sales tax receipts in Osage Beach and Lake Ozark for the first half of the year are in, and the numbers are less-than-encouraging. But officials in both communities are quick to point out that the best months are ahead.
Numbers provided here include TIF revenues, which is income generated from the TIF projects. In Osage Beach, it's Prewitt's Point; in Lake Ozark, it's the Shoppes at Eagles' Landing. TIF funds are collected by the cities and then dispersed to the appropriate entities. The balance is what is available for the operation of the cities.
Sales tax numbers through the first half of the year have some aldermen concerned, though they realize the second half of the year is typically stronger because it includes the summer in-season months.
Compared to budget estimates made by city staff in December, the city is $108,802 behind projections.
Budget estimates through July are $2,389,500 compared to actual receipts of $2,280,698.
But when comparing actual 2013 numbers to actual 2012, the city isn't faring quite as badly. The city is only $7,552 behind a year ago for the same period ― $2,280,698 for 2013 and $2,288,250 for 2012. The city has been ahead of last year in four of the last six months.
"There are a lot of variables on sales taxes," City Administrator Nancy Viselli explained. "Some businesses don't pay every month, and some pay quarterly, etc. Obviously, if we end the year at $4.5 million (the staff's forecast) we will be good."
Alderman John Olivarri noted in last week's regular board meeting that the best months of the year are yet to come.
Sales tax receipts January-July 2013 are $371,417, up $76,033 from last year's first half total of $295,384. Again, that's before TIF monies are disbursed.
City Administrator Dave Van Dee said "we are in reasonably good condition. We've brought in less than half of our anticipated revenue (with half a year to go), but our expenses are less than half also."
Overall, the city is only lagging slightly behind a year ago, again with second half revenues yet to come.
On the surface, it appears Lake Ozark's revenue is up 58 percent, but when TIF funds are removed the city is down about 2.4 percent.