Dane County: Reports better than expected sales tax collections

Contact: Joshua Wescott, Office of the County Executive (608) 267-8823 or cell (608) 669-5606

February Collection 38% Higher than a Year Ago

Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk announced today the county’s sales tax collection for the month of February was up 38.25% from the same month a year ago.

Over the past year, collections have run more than $1.6 million higher than the county conservatively budgeted.

“This is a bit of well-timed good budget news that shows the county is in an improving fiscal position and our local economy is gradually bouncing back,” Falk said.

“Because we prepared for the worst, the strengthening local economy should give our county the ability to help offset some of the state cuts to services like plowing our roads during blizzards and getting kids out of abusive homes,” Falk said. “As we look to the release of the Governor’s budget, it would be unfair for the Governor to penalize Dane County for our careful budgeting by slashing state funds for necessary services.”

Falk and the county board budgeted conservatively during the recession and achieved millions in savings for taxpayers by respectfully negotiating salary cuts of 5% and health care benefit concessions of $1-million a year with its nine employee unions. The county has also made cautious projections of revenue, and made additional cost-cutting measures like the consolidation of county departments.

The 2011 county budget was built on the projection the county would see little improvement in sales tax collection from last year.

Date: February 18, 2011

To: Dane County Board of Supervisors

From: Kathleen Falk

Dane County Executive

Today, Dane County was notified of the amount of its February sales tax payment. The February payment is the final payment for fiscal year 2010. I am pleased to inform the Board that the total sales tax receipts for 2010 amounted to $41,785,231. This is an increase of 3.7% over the receipts for 2009.

We conservatively budgeted sales tax for 2010 at $40,143,843, so the actual receipts represent a surplus of $1,641,380 over the amount budgeted. The budgeted amount for 2011 is $40,545,281.