City sales taxes down about 8 percent
By By Lisa Tindell
With sales tax receipts down in Brewton, Brewton council members voted last week not to participate in the Alabama sales tax holiday in August.
Opposing the choice not to participate in the holiday, Councilman Joe Watson said area residents need the tax break.
But Jennings said the reason the city won’t be participating in the statewide event is simple – money.
Jennings said a decrease in sales tax revenues in recent months was one reason that he brought the tax holiday vote to the table.
Sales tax revenues run the city by helping to pay salaries of employees as well as funding a variety of services offered by the city.
East Brewton’s sales taxes are down slightly, Mayor Terry Clark said Thursday. He said the city council has not yet decided whether it will participate in the sales tax holiday.
Jennings said Brewton’s municipal government is in better shape than most communities in neighboring counties. Mobile City Council members, for example, voted last week not to pass a proposed 1-cent sales tax increase. The result, the mayor there has said, will be city-wide layoffs.
Jennings said other elected officials around the state are facing similar situations, with every effort being made to keep services viable for the community and to keep employees on the job.
Jennings said the decision to forego the sales tax holiday in August was one the council made knowing what it would mean to consumers.
Jennings said other communities have opted out of the sales tax holiday event because of falling revenues.
Jennings said the city’s obligation is to keep revenue coming in.