AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - Sales tax revenue has been up 14 percent since the pandemic hit.
With the growing Canyon population and more people shopping local and online, Canyon sale taxes have been steadily increasing throughout the pandemic.
Canyon EDC and Canyon City Hall leaders say when the pandemic hit, they originally prepared for a 30 to 40 percent decrease in sales tax revenues.
“There’s the effects of the 2018 supreme court decision, Wayfair decision, which impacts how the sales tax are collected, where the sale takes place, which mostly involves internet sales. And then also the impacts of the COVID, upon people probably buying online more than they have in the past,” said Joel Wright, director of finance for the City of Canyon.
Wright says normally the majority of people in Canyon would buy in Amarillo, but with the pandemic more people shopped closer to home.
“Well obviously were very close to Amarillo and it’s easy to go to Amarillo to go shopping or to go out to dinner. And I think people stayed home and took advantage of our excellent restaurants and our retail stores. So, we just shopped at home, we’ve got everything anybody would need right here in Canyon Texas,” said Don Lee, president of Canyon EDC.
“Businesses in our case it’s probably, it’s hard to tell. Maybe it’s helped them be sustained whereas otherwise they probably would have seen a sharper decrease because of COVID. But at least initially, I think people were staying in town and buying locally more than driving to Amarillo,” said Wright.
Wright also says the Canyon industries that have suffered the most and have not benefited from the sales tax revenue increase are the tourism and hospitality businesses.
“People don’t travel for business, they don’t travel for meetings, they don’t travel for leisure, so any business that is in that industry has been affected,” said Wright.
Wright says he believes the increase has hit its peak and does not expect the sales tax revenue to continue to rise for the time being.
“I don’t think we’ll see a sharp decrease because I don’t think the impacts of COVID is going to be an immediate change in people’s behaviors, spending behaviors,” said Wright.
This is calculated based on the City of Canyon’s sales tax revenue allocation received within the calendar year:
- Increase in 2020 over 2019 = 14 percent
- Increase in 2019 over 2018 = 2 percent
Canyon’s sales tax revenue has increased 28 percent since 2017 (past 4 years).