Increased sales tax revenues reported in Scioto County

By Patrick Keck - [email protected]

SCIOTO — The Scioto County Commissioners convened Tuesday morning for its regularly scheduled meeting, passing all 11 items on its agenda.

Regarding the Ohio Department of Taxation’s July financial report, the Commissioners denoted the substantial increase in sales tax revenues. According to the report, non-auto sales tax collections totaled $949.2 million and auto sales tax revenues were $182.6 million, 11.4% and 36.3% above estimated sums respectively. Locally, the Commissioners reported a revenue of $1,187,322 for July, an increase of $173,709 from last year.

Commissioner Cathy Coleman owed the increase to the fact that citizens were spending more as locations like casinos and restaurants reopened following the coronavirus shutdown.

“I think it’s hard to put a finger on any one thing,” added Commissioner Mike Crabtree, contributing the jump to taxes on Internet sales where more customers spent their money and increased unemployment benefits.

According to the report, “Because the July 2020 permissive distributions were based on May collections, when auto sales tax greatly declined due to the pandemic, the draw against July GRF (General Revenue Fund) auto sales tax revenue was much smaller than in July 2019.”

“The main thing is that, if it takes away some of the effects of Covid-19, it’s a good thing,” said Crabtree. “We’re still down a considerable amount of what we had accumulated before. We need to be vigilant and try to figure out where we can make improvements.”

Item No. 9 on the agenda referenced Scioto County Jobs and Family Services Director Tammy Moore’s request for transfer funds. Described as a regular transfer by the Commissioners, an overall total of $186,280 in the budget will be covered by a transfer of $102,764 from the Child, Family, and Adult Community Protective Services income to the Child Support, the remaining $83,516 will come from Child Support incentive monies.

When asked on the timetable of the construction at the Earl Thomas Conley Park, the Commissioners said they do not have a set date for when the work will be completed.

Earning the bid to do the resurfacing, Scioto Valley Paving, LLC will likely have to cease operations as the weather begins to cool. The Lucasville-based company won-out earlier this month on the project, which will resurface the basketball and tennis courts, install a new pickleball court, and conduct general repairs of the park’s walkways and parking lots.

“Weather has a huge effect on things like this. Many times, these things should be started in mid-August,” said Crabtree. “These are small things, so if we get a warming trend, we should be able to get things done in a short period of time.”

The grants, $97,805 from Scioto County Paving and $100,000 from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, must be spent by the end of the year.

Off the agenda, the Commissioners announced their special meeting with the Scioto-Lawrence Solid Waste District will take place on Thursday. Likely through a Zoom format, the meeting will focus on filling the director role currently held by Interim Director Stephanie Helms.

Crabtree said the work- servicing the dumpsters and recycling- has gone on mostly unaffected with exception for the road patrol clean-ups due to a lack of workers.

“Hopefully, if we get past Covid-19, we will have our issues worked out with Lawrence County (Commissioners),” said Crabtree. “Covid-19 has had a huge impact on the county, not only here, but on other parts of the state.”

By Patrick Keck

[email protected]

Reach Patrick Keck (740)-353-3501 ext. 1931, by email at [email protected], or on Twitter @pkeckreporter.

© 2020 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved.

Reach Patrick Keck (740)-353-3501 ext. 1931, by email at [email protected], or on Twitter @pkeckreporter.

© 2020 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved.