By David Tuma, Publisher
Belton reported strong sales tax revenues in two of the last three months. In March, sale tax returns from the state were up 5.9 percent. In May, Belton received $489,391, compared to $460,352 last year. For the year, Belton is up almost one percent with $2,037,753 received.
Through the first six months of the physical year for the city of Belton, they are up 30 percent in funds received from the state off of retail sales in Belton, compared to the same time period in 2012. This total is a $565,000 increase in revenue when you compare the two years. Retail sales is something Belton lacked for decades.
Businesses invest in the community and pay taxes on that property. The impact on the investment in Belton is more than just retail sales. It is jobs, quality of life and financial improvements in the community.
Hotel tax receipts are up three percent on the year with $75,202 received the first six months.
Housing starts in Belton are up 106 percent with 120 starts this year compared to 157 all of last year. Belton is on pace shatter last year’s record of 157. In 2016, there were almost as many housing starts in Belton as 2014-15 combined. If the trend of 2017 continues, Belton will see 240 new homes under construction. Temple-Killeen are down almost 10 percent over the same period. Texas continues to build homes in record numbers, with a solid 11 percent increase over last year.
Medium home list price in Belton is $236,200. Thirteen percent of the homes sold in Belton are priced over $300,000. New commercial and residential water tap requests are up 213 percent this year. Through the first six months, Belton has received 166 requests compared to 202 the entire 2016 year. In 2015, there were only 89 requests for service.
Belton is booming in more than just the traffic congestion.
Fuel prices are up over last year. The price of a barrel of oil bottomed out early in 2016. Prices rose but remained steady through the end of the year. Comparing the final six months of last year to this year prices are up 3.2 percent.