Taxes go up today

Published 5:00 am Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Doing business in Brewton will become a little more costly today as area retailers begin collecting an additional penny in sales and use tax.
Brewton City Clerk John Angel said the additional tax is a way for the city to become more self-sustaining financially.
“With everything going on in the government right now, we need to do all that we can to be independent,” Angel said. “We can’t relay on funds from other sources. We need to be able to take care of our own needs.”
With a rise in sales and use taxes from 3 to 4 cents in Brewton, Angel said the additional funds to help keep the city running, will not have an effect on schools who receive a portion of city tax revenues.
“We just can’t run the city on 2 cents anymore,” Angel said. “We had the 3-cent sales tax with 1 cent going to the schools. By raising the tax to 4 cents, we will be able to have a larger revenue without hurting the schools.”
Angel said that financial reports on the increase in revenues from the newly imposed sales tax would be a little while in coming.
“It will be the end of February before we know how much revenue we will see from the tax increase,” Angel said. “January reporting won’t be done until sometime in February.”
In realizing the increase in sales tax revenues for the city, Angel said the initial hope is to begin rebuilding reserve funds for the city.
“We hope to see at least $900,000 in revenue in the first year,” Angel said. “We need to re-build reserves and start making advances for the city finances.”
Angel said every business who charges sales and use taxes will be required to collect the additional one-cent beginning Jan. 1.
Business owners have been notified in a variety of ways — including automated calls on Monday.

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