Nevada's taxable sales rose by 3.7 percent in February to $3.8 billion.
But revenues to the state are still below projections used to build the current budget. And since Nevada's schools rely heavily on sales tax revenues, the school districts are also collecting less than budgeted for - which the state is legally required to make up.
Carson City, Douglas and Lyon counties were actually down compared to taxable sales in February 2006 - the capital city by 4.9 percent, Douglas by 8.6 percent and Lyon by 17.9 percent. Total sales reported in Carson City were $71.9 million with $50.2 million in Douglas and $24.4 million in Lyon.
The only other county in the red was Esmeralda which reported $561,531 in taxable sales, an 8.7 percent decline.
Taxation Director Dino Dicianno pointed out, however, that this February is being compared to a "phenomenal 12.9 percent increase in February 2006."
Nonetheless, he said, the state general fund portion of tax collections is $22.1 million below the forecast for this fiscal year. The Local School Support Tax collections are also below the projections used to build the state budget by about the same amount.
Gov. Jim Gibbons said the situation "further highlights the challenge we face in meeting the current fiscal year's revenue needs."
In Carson City, auto dealer sales were down more than $4.7 million to $16.5 million - a 21.9 percent drop compared to last February. And sales of building materials were off 21.2 percent to $4.4 million.
In Douglas, restaurant and bar sales were off 5 percent to $12.4 million. But auto sales and building materials categories were also down by more than 20 percent.
Taxable sales of building materials dropped 55.5 percent in Lyon County to $2.22 million. Furniture and home decoration sales were off by 64 percent.
But Storey County had an excellent month with total taxable sales nearly doubling to $11.6 million. The growth was spread across numerous categories including health and personal care stores, food and beverage sales, rental and leasing services. The biggest single jump was in specialty trade contractors which grew 550 percent to nearly $4.6 million in taxable sales. That was followed by a 41.8 percent increase in miscellaneous manufacturing to $2.1 million.
Clark County reported a 2.8 percent increase in taxable sales to $2.8 billion and Washoe a 4.9 percent increase to $554.4 million.
• Contact reporter Geoff Dornan at firstname.lastname@example.org or 687-8750.