Statewide taxable sales increased 6.3 percent in July to just more than $4 billion.
In Churchill County, taxable sales fell 26.2 percent to $17.9 million. The reason was in the Utilities category which went from a $5.47 million plus last year to a $1.7 million rebate this year — a swing of more than $7.2 million.
The decrease occurred because of tax abatements granted to alternative energy. Because of the abatements, final figures in Durable and Nondurable goods were adjusted to show decreases of 42.9 percent and 22.8 percent, respectively. Durable goods raked in $987,276, while NonDurable goods finished with $379,655.
In addition, auto sales dipped 21.2 percent to $2.46 million in Churchill County.
Other areas dipping included Furniture and Home Furnishings ($428,510, minus 21 percent); Electronics and Appliance Stores ($325,487, minus 21.6 percent); Building Material and Garden Equipment ($1.9 million, minus 3.3 percent); and Food and Beverage Store ($1.01 million, minus 7 percent).
Areas showing gains included Sporting Goods ($249,009, 642 percent); General Merchandise, which includes Walmart and Bealls, ($3.3 million, 1.7 percent); Miscellaneous Store Retailers ($503,987, 20 percent); and Food Service and Drinking Places, 21 percent).
The county finished July with $17.9 in taxable sales compared to $24.3 million during the same time in 2013.
Churchill was one of seven Nevada counties to report a decrease compared with the same month last year.
Sales in Lyon County were up 2.8 percent to $29.69 million. A near 25 percent increase in Wholesale Durable Goods was neatly offset by a 25 percent drop in auto sales. But Building Materials reported a 16.2 percent increase and Food Services and Drinking Places a 6.5 percent rise.
Those large categories were offset by reductions in a long list of smaller categories.
In Carson City, the increase was 4.7 percent, including 4.6 percent in the capital’s largest category, auto sales, which came in at $20.8 million of the $72.2 million total.
Food Services and Drinking places were up 7.4 percent to $8.2 million and General Merchandise sales up 6.2 percent to $11.8 million. Building materials sales were also up, 6.6 percent to $6.6 million. But those increases were partially offset by decreases in a variety of smaller categories including wholesalers of durable goods, a number of business administrative and support categories and telecommunications.
The big surprise came from Storey County, which reported a whopping 772 percent increase from $6.98 million to $60.9 million in taxable sales for July. But since the Tesla deal wasn’t signed until September and many of the categories showing increases have nothing to do with automobiles, it wasn’t clear how of it can be attributed to the electric car company’s arrival.
There were huge increases in a long list of categories from miscellaneous store retailers to sporting goods, wholesales of durable goods, machinery manufacturing among others — all tied to development at the Tahoe-Reno Industrial Center.
The change in Douglas County was small but still an increase — 2.5 percent to $57.65 million. The county’s two biggest tax generators — Food Services and Drinking Places and General Merchandise stores — were both down. The former was off 4.7 percent to $14.9 million and the latter 1.4 percent to $7.8 million.
But a long list of other categories made up the loss including such things as Rental and Leasing Services, Non-Store Retailers, Building materials, Furniture and Appliance sales.