Statewide taxable sales were up 6.1 percent in May to a total of more than $3.9 billion but Carson City didn’t share in the growth, reporting an increase of just 1.5 percent.
It was a story similar to April when statewide sales increased 7.3 percent but Carson’s actually declined three-tenths of a percent.
The capital’s biggest category most months is auto sales and the car dealers came through with a 10 percent increase to $19.2 million. But the city’s second largest category, General Merchandise Stores, offset fully half of that with a 4.7 percent decrease to $11.2 million.
With tensions among lobbyists and advocates high in the last month of the 2013 Legislature, Food Services and Drinking Places reported an 8.1 percent increase with sales of $7.9 million in May.
City Manager Larry Werner said he would have a better handle on Carson City numbers when Finance Director Nick Providenti returns next week and provides his monthly analysis but that the numbers were confusing to him since the city reported tax collections up 5 percent.
Altogether, seven of Nevada’s small counties reported strong double-digit gains in May. The strongest was Churchill County with $35.7 million in taxable sales — up 60 percent over the same month last year. The vast majority of that increase was in the Utilities category, which grew from $1.9 million a year earlier to $10.3 million. But related categories including building construction, Specialty Trade Contractors, Electrical Equipment Manufacturers and Wholesale Durable Goods also logged large gains.
In Lyon County, the growth was 27.8 percent to a total of just over $33 million. Heavy Construction, Building Supplies, auto sales and the Food and Beverage categories all contributed substantially to the gain.
Esmeralda’s taxable sales grew more than 58 percent, Humboldt’s by 46 percent, Mineral 28 percent, Nye 57.6 percent and Storey by 22.6 percent.
Douglas County was up by 5 percent to $46.59 million.
Clark County reported a 4.7 percent increase to $2.8 billion with strong performances in several building trades and construction categories as well as auto sales.
Washoe had an 8 percent gain to $501 million in May. Like Clark, Washoe had strong performances in a variety of construction categories, a 13 percent gain in auto sales.
Gross revenue collections for May were $308.1 million, a 6.6 percent increase over the previous May. The General Fund portion of that, which goes to the state, was $78.1 million — a 7.27 percent increase. That puts the General Fund portion just under a half percent ahead of the projections made by the Economic Forum and used to build the state budget.