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City’s share of May tax revenue exceeds expectations; Hotwire subscribers up

By Natalie Anderson
natalie.anderson@salisburypost.com

SALISBURY — Salisbury Finance Director Shannon Moore on Tuesday provided City Council members with a look at the city’s shares of sales and property tax revenues, saying they exceed what was anticipated.

Moore presented council members with a look at the city’s share of sales tax and property tax collections for the month of May as well as the revenue generated from the Hotwire broadband lease.

While $20.21 million in property tax collections was budgeted for the 2019-20 fiscal year, actual collections as of May are $20.66 million. That amounts to a 98.49% collection rate so far for the 2019-20 fiscal year. Data about tax collections for the month of June, the last in the fiscal year, will be published by the North Carolina Department of Revenue later this month, which will complete the city’s full picture of revenues collected for the 2019-20 fiscal year.

Moore said, while the city budgeted to receive $7.65 million in sales tax total, $7.73 million had been received as of May. The city’s total share of sales tax revenue for May was $744,665. In May 2019, the total share was $694,789.

Salisbury Mayor Karen Alexander said these figures made for “very exciting news.”

The total amount of sales tax generated in Rowan County in May was $6 million, which is more than the $5.97 million generated in May 2019. Of the $6 million generated, the county collected $3.96 million.

Additionally, part of the city’s Fibrant Fund includes revenue from the Hotwire broadband lease. Moore said a total of $97,155 was received from the lease in the fourth quarter, totaling $466,198 in revenue received for the 2019-20 fiscal year.

Council members asked if the city has received the payment from Hotwire, particularly because there has been a history of late payments. Moore said the check was due to the city on Aug. 15, and Hotwire said it’s in transit. The city is currently tracking down the payment, she added.

As of June, a total of 3,516 people are subscribers, not including city government accounts. In July 2019, the number of subscribers not associated with city government was 3,309.

Moore also provided a look at spending so far in the 2020-21 fiscal year. The city’s adopted budget includes $45.64 million in the general fund. When factoring in the $350,000 set to come before the council for the Bell Tower Green project, along with City Park Lake projects, Plaza projects, MUNIS software and about half a dozen other small projects, Moore said $2.48 million has been appropriated from the fund balance so far.

“In looking at July, there’s a not a lot of key performance indicators to show any significant changes in any of the funds from last July to this July,” Moore said.

The state Department of Revenue website lists the amounts of the sales tax revenue share for each municipality in May as well. Those amounts, based per capita, are:

  • $92,415 for China Grove
  • $19,233 for Cleveland
  • $32,602 for East Spencer
  • $17,896 for Faith
  • $67,273 for Granite Quarry
  • $214,068 for Kannapolis
  • $68,481 for Landis
  • $46,876 for Rockwell
  • $70,163 for Spencer

Contact reporter Natalie Anderson at 704-797-4246.

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