Coweta collecting fewer sales tax dollars for schools as retail slides

It’s a sign of the times, the economic times that is. A recent report on the Coweta County School System’s one-cent sales tax (SPLOST) revenues showed that collections dipped by nearly $750,000 between November 2009 and October 2010 compared to the same time a year earlier.

A report by Assistant Superintendent for Finance Keith Chapman showed collections for the period of November 2009 to October 2010 totaled $19,227,614. That compares to the $20,020,788 collected during the one-year period from November 2008 to October 2009.

“Revenues have stayed basically quiet for the last three months,” Chapman said, adding that projections showed an estimated combined revenue of $95-97 million over the five year collection period.

The five-year sales tax that was continued by voters is set to expire in mid-2012.

Collections during the past several year are a visible reminder of the effects of the recession. Looking back over the past five years of collections, revenue generated from November 2005 through October 2006 totaled $19.711 million. That compares to $20.474 million collected during the 2006-2007 period and $20.91 million collected during the 2007-2008 period.

In a related issue, members of the Newnan-Coweta Chamber of Commerce attending a recent school board meeting asked the board to continue the Education SPLOST (Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax) when it expires in June 2012. Chamber chairman-elect Vicki Kaiser praised the school system for its many innovations on behalf of students, teachers, parents and the community.

Superintendent Blake Bass said the school system is currently working on a facilities plan for later submission.

“We do need industry and business to continue to have this be a great place to work and live,” Bass said.