Tourism revenues rise despite COVID | News

Tourism, sales and use and real property taxes were higher in the first and second quarter of fiscal year 2021 (July-December 2020) than during the same time period in 2019, the county director of finance told the Greene County Board of Supervisors April 13.

Overall, by the end of fiscal year 2021 the county had collected 15% more revenue in its general fund than during the same time in fiscal year 2020. Expenditures from the general fund were up only 2%.

The county collected $265,537.81 in transient occupancy taxes (TOT) by the end of 2020 or nearly $68,000 more year over year, said county Finance Director and Deputy County Administrator Tracy Morris.

Restaurants were hard hit last year due to the pandemic, but the county collected $387,744.26 by Dec. 30 in meals taxes, which is nearly $9,000 more than was collected in the same time frame in 2019—prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Morris noted.

Local sales and use taxes were higher by $229,541.73 in the second half of 2020 than they were in the second half of 2019.

Additionally, there was $147,523.46 more collected in real property taxes over the same time frame in 2019.

“Is there an explanation, in your opinion, of why those revenues went up in that period in the middle of a pandemic?” Board Chairman Bill Martin, Stanardsville, asked.

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