NEWS HEADLINES

Newark MDD brings in $2K

By Richard Greene | Published Saturday, April 14, 2018
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Newark

Last May, Newark voters went to the polls and approved the establishment of the Newark Municipal Development District, moving the half-cent of sales tax set aside for property tax relief to the district.

The Newark MDD brought in $2,134 in February, and since November, the district has collected $10,289.07. With the half-cent taken off the general fund tax rate, Newark’s February tax receipts with only 1 cent levied were down 66.58 percent from the same month in 2017, from $13,494.80 to $4,509.04. In the past four months, the general fund collections are down almost $15,000 to $23,532.73. These figures are from the April report from the Texas Comptroller, which shows sales from February.

“We knew we were taking the money out of the general fund and putting it in a savings account for economic development,” said Newark City Administrator Diane Rasor.

She pointed out the money can be utilized for a variety of projects to improve the city – industrial and manufacturing improvements, retail, recreational and community projects or housing assistance.

Another Wise County city, Boyd, will go to voters next month asking to approve an MDD and the moving of the half-cent tax.

Last fiscal year, Boyd collected $401,855 in sales tax. City Administrator Greg Arrington said a third of that money could have moved into an MDD for projects in the city.

“That’s $134,000 that would have funded an MDD. It can be used on capital improvements, park improvements or grants to clean up houses,” Arrington said.

“[Now], that half-cent is tied to property tax relief, and no matter what the city does and what commercial projects come in, the city’s revenue stays flat. It never gets ahead.”

Boyd collected $32,447.10 in February, roughly $1,000 or 2.6 percent less than February 2017. Since November, the city brought in $129,605.30, 3.07 percent more than the four months between November 2016 and February 2017.

Decatur’s sales tax collections continued to grow. Decatur brought in $294,166.76 in February – an increase of nearly $11,000 from the same month last year. Including the large audit collections in the past few months, Decatur’s receipts are up 23.13 percent since November, with $1.59 million brought in.

Bridgeport’s collections were down 8.21 percent in February from the previous year at $140,168.05 from $152,715.33.

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