Storm was no barrier to higher Texas sales tax revenue

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DALLAS – October sales tax revenue in Texas grew by 6.9% year-over-year to $2.46 billion, according to state Comptroller Glenn Hegar.

“Hurricane Harvey does not appear to have had a significant net effect on state sales tax revenue,” Hegar said in a Nov. 2 monthly state sales tax report.

Hurricane Harvey struck Texas on Aug. 25, bringing record rainfall and widespread flooding to southeast Texas, including the port cities of Corpus Christi, Houston, Beaumont and Port Arthur.

In the wake of the hurricane, sales tax on goods and services related to recovery were suspended and businesses in the area were granted 90-day extensions for submitting tax forms.

For the past three months, revenue was up 5.2% compared to the same period a year ago. In a state with no income tax, sales tax accounts for 58% of Texas revenue.

Chris Bryan, spokesman for Hegar said the increase “definitely speaks to the overall strength of the Texas economy. Over the next couple of months, we’ll start to see more of the localized impacts.”

Hegar said that replacement of cars and trucks lost in the flooding actually boosted motor vehicle sales and rental taxes. At $450 million, those revenues were 13.7% higher than in the same month last year.

Motor fuel tax revenue of $311.1 million was up 4.2%, taxes on oil and natural gas production produced a 28.9% monthly increase to $288.6 million.

“Sales tax revenue growth was led by receipts from the mining and manufacturing sectors,” Hegar said. “Most of the other economic sectors, such as wholesale trade, retail trade, services and restaurants, also grew moderately compared to last year.”

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Hurricane Harvey Glenn Hegar Texas Comptroller Texas