Internet sales help boost tax revenues

BATAVIA, OH — Despite the pandemic, Clermont County’s sales tax revenues are estimated to increase by 4.3 percent in 2020. Taxes on sales over the internet helped fuel the increase, said Mary Rains, director of the Clermont County Office of Management and Budget. Rains presented proposed 2021 appropriations to the Board of County Commissioners on Dec. 2.

The sales tax is projected to generate about half of the General Fund’s $62.1 million in anticipated revenues for 2020: an estimated $30.6 million. Sales taxes are estimated to bring in about $31.4 million of the approximate $62.8 million General Fund for 2021.

The General Fund is the largest single discretionary fund of the Board of County Commissioners.

After the sales tax, charges for services ($9.7 million) and property taxes ($8.9 million) bring in the most revenue.

Looking toward 2021, property taxes are projected to grow 5.5 percent due to property revaluation. Licenses and permits, expected to come in flat this year, are predicted to increase 29 percent next year due to projections for Batavia developments.

Mainly because of a reduction in investment income, the total General Fund is projected at $66.8 million for 2021. This would require the county to draw down $700,000 from reserves. By law, the county’s appropriation must be balanced.