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By NATHAN GREGORY
Starkville sales tax revenues for 2011 nearly eclipsed the $5 million mark through November and are on pace to beat the cityâ€™s previous annual tax revenue record total set in 2010, according to the cityâ€™s most recent sales tax report.
Novemberâ€™s $473,450.02 total was 10.12 percent higher than revenues collected in November 2010 and $12,944.68 more than revenues collected in October 2011. It was the second highest monthly total of the year, only falling short of Augustâ€™s total of $490,740.10. The percentage increase was also the second highest from the same month in the previous year, with May 2011 revenue totaling more than 10.56 percent more than May 2010 totals.
Total revenues from the cityâ€™s 2 percent food and beverage tax totaled $1,378,646.39 through November, meaning revenues for December would only need to reach $9,543.47 to exceed 2010 totals.
The November 2011 tally of $135,378.34 in 2 percent restaurant tax revenue was $16,667.34 higher than the previous Novemberâ€™s 14.04 percent increase.
Total sales tax revenues for 2011 through November reached $4,942,981.15, meaning December revenues would have to reach $374,586.96 to equal the 2010 intake of $5,317,568.11. It is the most prolific November on record since 1999.
The city collected $499,231.46 in December 2010. The average amount collected each month in 2011 is $449,361.92.
Starkville Mayor Parker Wiseman said the probability of setting an annual revenue record for the second straight year is a sign of population growth in the community.
â€śThis is a growing community. Itâ€™s growing in population and economic activity, and thatâ€™s ultimately very beneficial for the people that call Starkville home,â€ť Wiseman said.
He said he hopes the record-breaking November revenue total in 2011 is an indicator of what will happen in December.
â€śHopefully thatâ€™s the sign of a strong holiday season,â€ť Wiseman said. â€śI hope thatâ€™s a trend weâ€™ll see continue through our December collections.â€ť