The City of Tulsa's May sales tax check, which covers the period from mid-March to mid-April as reported by the Oklahoma Tax Commission, totaled $19,866,961 showing a 0.55 percent decrease from the same period one year ago. This total is two percent below budget estimates.
The sales tax total since July 2015 is $217.8 million compared with $215.7 million for the same period last year, showing a small increase of a little less than one percent.
"Sales and use tax variations heavily influenced my decision to propose a smaller operating budget for Fiscal Year 2017 than last year so the City can continue to be prepared for potential or unanticipated declines in our revenues," Mayor Dewey Bartlett said. "We must remain vigilant when planning for the upcoming fiscal year by increasing our ability to react to economic downturns by adding to our rainy day fund, which will help keep our core services intact."
"The rainy day fund is a fiscal constraint on spending and my proposal to add $3.2 million to the rainy day fund this year will mean more money will be available in that fund when we need it the most. I will continue to do my part by pushing for sales tax reforms at the state level, which would positively impact Tulsa's revenue streams," Bartlett added.
Use taxes for May totaled $2,286,256 which is up 13 percent from the same period a year ago and one percent above budget estimates.
Use tax collections for the fiscal year are lower than one year ago. The use tax total since July 2015 is $21.8 million compared with $22 million for the same period last year, showing a 0.64 percent decrease.
Sales tax and use tax collections provide two-thirds of the City of Tulsa's general fund. Vital services such as police and fire protection, 911 emergency dispatch, snow and ice removal from streets, pothole repair and mowing of grass in medians and parks are supported by sales and use taxes.