AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) -New reports are showing that Amarillo continues to show a long cycle of economic expansion.
Data shows Amarillo’s sale tax revenue increased more than 14 percent or about $1.1 million in the month of December compared to 2018, which Amarillo Economists say has been an ongoing trend.
“For the most part we continue to be a growing economy in Amarillo for one thing. And that is almost always represented by higher levels of spending by households and businesses, which in return is reflected by sales tax numbers,” said Amarillo Economist Karr Ingram.
According to the Texas Comptroller, in 2018 local sales tax revenue was $7.6 million and in 2019 it was $8.7 million.
“An increase in sales locally ties what we are seeing nationally. In the last year we’ve seen a decrease in interest rates and we expected that to translate into more economic activity, and that is what we have seen,” said Amarillo National Bank Senior Vice President Matt Ramsey.
As some cities like Amarillo and Canyon continue to see an increase in sales tax revenue, others in the Panhandle are being affected in a different way, like Canadian. At the same time that Amarillo saw a 14 percent increase, they saw a 16 percent decrease.
“That’s a part of the world that it is pretty heavily influenced by the oil and gas business, and the oil and gas business is just not doing very well right now. 2019 was a year of contraction in the oil and gas business. That’s certainly the case in the Panhandle, statewide and probably nationally but certainly the case around here," said Ingram.
Ingram says that we currently don’t have any rigs running right now in the Panhandle, but when we have exploration, like new wells being drilled, serviced and completed, those things tend to generate job growth and stimulate economic impact.
“When that stuff is not going on and it’s not going right now, it tends to kind of have a depressing effect on the economies that are connect to that, Canadian is certainly one of those economies,” said Ingram.
Ingram says based on what we know with these numbers, Amarillo will continue to have growth, but regionally, we might have a different story because oil and gas is lagging in the Panhandle.