Valley cities post strong sales tax numbers for October

The city of Harlingen’s lackluster numbers in sales tax reimbursements this year continued to sag in October, the only major city in Cameron County to post negative numbers in an otherwise strong Rio Grande Valley showing.

Harlingen showed a drop of 2.75% for the month, but remained in positive numbers for the year at plus 1.27%.

Elsewhere double-digit increases in October over the previous year were reported by Rio Hondo (up 26.75%), South Padre Island (up 24.44%), Los Fresnos (up 22.88%), San Benito (up 28.83%), La Feria (up 16.45%), Port Isabel (up 15.89%) and Brownsville (up 6.42%).

In Willacy County, Raymondville saw a drop for the month of 18.43% and Lyford showed another very strong month, up 48.83%.

The sales tax reimbursements are seen as an indicator of the health of a city’s retail sector. Statewide, Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar announced he would send cities, counties, transit systems and special purpose taxing districts $820.5 million in local sales tax allocations for the month, 7.8% more than a year ago.

In Hidalgo County, several cities reversed negative numbers from September, with Edinburg leading the way at up 7.57%. Pharr was up 3.55%, Mission up 3.41%, Weslaco up 3.37% and McAllen up 3.19%.

The only city posting negative numbers for October in Hidalgo County was Mercedes, down 20.05%.

The allocations are based on sales made in October by businesses that report tax monthly.

rkelley@valleystar.com