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Sean Whaley

Nevada Taxable Sales Up

29 July 2004

CARSON CITY -- Consumers and tourists helped Nevada post another double-digit gain in taxable sales in May, up 12.6 percent over May 2003, the state Department of Taxation reported Wednesday.

State taxable sales for the fiscal year to date total $34.6 billion, 12.5 percent more than over the same period last year.

Clark County taxable sales were up 14.2 percent in May to $2.4 billion, and are up 13.6 percent for the year to $25.5 billion.

It was the fifth consecutive month of double-digit increases in statewide taxable sales.

Only Churchill, Lincoln and Pershing counties showed decreases in taxable sales in May compared with May 2003.

The biggest increases in statewide taxable sales came in the categories of eating and drinking places, up 11.7 percent; automotive dealers and gasoline, up 13 percent; building materials and hardware, up 24 percent; wholesale trade and durable goods, up 23.2 percent; and miscellaneous retail, up 10.5 percent.

Other categories with gains included general merchandise stores, up 9.7 percent; home furniture and furnishings, up 11.2 percent; food stores, up 6.3 percent; and apparel and accessory stores, up 16 percent.

In Clark County, eating and drinking places were up 12.8 percent.

The sales tax collected by the state from the purchase of taxable goods is up 13.7 percent this fiscal year over last, and totals $702.8 million. Projections for this year were for sales taxes to climb 5.1 percent.

The Tax Department reported that cigarette taxes, increased to 80 cents a pack from 35 cents by the Legislature last year, are about 2 percent behind forecasts. State cigarette taxes total $96.6 million so far this year, a 146 percent increase over last year.

Liquor taxes, increased 75 percent by the Legislature, are about 13 percent above forecasts. For the year, liquor taxes total $33 million, up 84 percent over last fiscal year.

The live entertainment tax continues to trail predictions, totaling only $3.9 million this year. The tax was supposed to bring in $27 million this year.