Select Page

KURV PHOTO.jpg

Featured, from left: Daniel Rivera, Founder, Grindstone Coworking of Edinburg (www.TheGrindstone.co) and Agustín García, Jr., Executive Director of the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation, reviewing key data about the strength of the Edinburg economy prior to a broadcast interview on Tuesday, May 10, 2016 on KURV710 Talk Radio.

Photograph By DIEGO REYNA

For the second consecutive month, Edinburg’s retail economy during May 2016 had the best rate of improvement – 10.78 percent – over the same month last year among the Valley’s major cities, while by comparison, cities statewide reported a combined average improvement of 2.7 percent in May 2016 compared with May 2015, the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation has announced. These figures are based on sales made in May 2016 by businesses that report tax monthly. For May 2016, Edinburg’s retail economy generated $1,730,440.77 in local sales taxes, compared with $1,561,948.68 during the same time in 2015, representing the improvement of 10.78 percent, according to the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts. The local sales tax is used in Edinburg to help pay for many city services, while the Edinburg EDC uses its one-half cent local sales tax to help generate economic development in the city.

••••••

Edinburg’s retail economy again registers best monthly rate of improvement – almost 11 percent – among Valley’s major cities for May 2016 – and better than Texas average

By DAVID A. DÍAZ
Legislativemedia@aol.com

For the second consecutive month, Edinburg’s retail economy during May 2016 had the best rate of improvement – 10.78 percent – over the same month last year among the Valley’s major cities, while by comparison, cities statewide reported a combined average improvement of 2.7 percent in May 2016 compared with May 2015, the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation has announced.

These figures are based on sales made in May 2016 by businesses that report tax monthly.

The local sales tax figures are among the latest economic barometers showing positive growth in Edinburg, and are featured included in a detailed summary provided by the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts, which released retail sales figures on Thursday, June 7, 2016.

Among its many duties, the Texas Comptroller’s office is the state’s chief tax collector, accountant, revenue estimator and treasurer.

The local sales tax is used in Edinburg to help pay for many city services, while the Edinburg EDC uses its one-half cent local sales tax to help generate economic development in the city.

The amount of local sales taxes collected also helps reflect the strength of an economy, along with construction activities, per capita income, education, historical performances, and related trends.

The Edinburg EDC, of which Agustín García, Jr. is Executive Director, is the jobs-creation arm of the Edinburg Mayor and Edinburg City Council.

The Edinburg EDC Board of Directors is comprised of Mark Iglesias as President, Harvey Rodríguez, Jr. as Vice President, Ellie M. Torres as Secretary/Treasurer, and Mayor Richard García and Richard Rupert as Members.

Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar announced he will send cities, counties, transit systems and special purpose taxing districts $624 million in local sales tax allocations from the May 2016 local sales tax collections. All those entities combined represented an average of a 2.3 percent increase over May 2015.

“The cities of Dallas, San Antonio, Austin and Fort Worth saw noticeable increases in sales tax allocations,” Hegar said. “Energy-centric cities such as Houston and Midland continue to see decreases in sales tax allocations.”

Among the Valley’s largest cities, Edinburg’s retail economy from January through May 2016 was 4.59 percent better than January through May 2015, with Pharr posting the best rate of increase for that same five-month period, with a 5.25 percent improvement.

Based on local sales taxes generated, McAllen had the best showing in terms of revenue for May 2016 ($4,515,754.15), followed by Brownsville ($2,806,115.00), Edinburg ($1,730,440.77), and Harlingen ($1,729,021.26).

During the first five months of 2016, Edinburg’s retail economy produced $12,287,841.24 in local sales taxes, compared with $11,748,113.94 for January through May 2015, representing an improvement of 4.59 percent.

For May 2016, Edinburg’s retail economy generated $1,730,440.77 in local sales taxes, compared with $1,561,948.68 during the same time in 2015, representing the improvement of 10.78 percent, also according to the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts.

The sales tax, formally known as the State Sales and Use Tax, is imposed on all retail sales, leases and rentals of most goods, as well as taxable services. Texas cities, counties, transit authorities and special purpose districts have the option of imposing an additional local sales tax for a combined total of state and local taxes of 8 1/4% (.0825).

HOW OTHER VALLEY CITIES, COUNTIES PERFORMED FOR MAY 2016 AND JANUARY THROUGH MAY 2016

Based on the amount of sales taxes generated, according to the state comptroller’s office, the Valley’s major cities ranked accordingly in the following local sales tax figures, both May 2016 and for January through May 2016:

May 2016 compared with May 2015

McAllen: $4,515,754.15, down 3.02 percent compared with May 2015 ($4,656,457.85);
Brownsville: $2,806,115.00, up 0.31 percent compared with May 2015 ($2,797,420.03);
Edinburg: $1,730,440.77, up 10.78 percent compared with May 2015 ($1,561,948.68);
Harlingen: $1,729,021.26, up 1.41 percent compared with May 2015 ($1,704,916.52);
Pharr: $1,336,426.14, up 1.63 percent compared with May 2015 ($1,314,960.05);
Mission: $1,172,934.73, up 2.19 percent compared with May 2015 ($1,147,768.35); and
Weslaco: $886,969.95, up 0.57 percent compared with May 2015 ($881,861.26).

January through May 2016

McAllen: $35,994,601.39, down 4.32 percent compared with January through May 2015 ($37,622,086.48);
Brownsville: $21,788,707.46, up 2.27 percent compared with January through May 2015 ($21,303,478.01);
Harlingen: $13,276,387.44, up 2.56 percent compared with January through May 2015 ($12,943,980.47);
Edinburg: $12,287,841.24, up 4.59 percent compared with January through May 2015 ($11,748,113.94);
Pharr: $9,759,702.67, up 5.25 percent compared with January through May 2015 ($9,272,192.41);
Mission: $8,804,309.03, down 0.39 percent compared with January through May 2015 ($8,839,432.34); and
Weslaco: $6,925,063.26, down 3.06 percent compared with January through May 2015 ($7,143,967.42).

All cities in Hidalgo County reported a total of $11,661,900.39 in local sales taxes during the May 2016 period, compared with $11,441,002.66 in May 2015, an increase of 1.93 percent. Year-to-date (January through May 2016), all cities in Hidalgo County registered $89,466,053.89 in local sales taxes, compared with $89,708,125.37 for the same five months in 2015, a decrease of 0.26 percent.

Hidalgo County government does not collect a local sales tax.

All cities in Cameron County generated $5,618,476.34 in local sales taxes during May 2016, compared with $5,515,763.08 in May 2015, an increase of 1.86 percent. Year-to-date (January through May 2016), all cities in Cameron County registered $42,291,231.40 in local sales taxes, compared with $40,936,905.47 for the same period in 2015, an improvement of 3.30 percent.

Cameron County government does not collect a local sales tax.

All cities in Starr County produced $429,186.99 in local sales taxes during May 2016, compared with $428,917.23 in May 2015, an increase of 0.06 percent. Year-to-date (January through May 2016), all cities in Starr County registered $3,244,502.17 in local sales taxes, compared with $3,207,768.70 for the same period in 2015, an increase of 1.14 percent.

Starr County government does not collect a local sales tax.

All cities in Willacy County produced $106,677.29 in local sales taxes during May 2016, compared with $116,535.59 during the same month in 2015, a decrease of 8.45 percent. Year-to-date (January through May 2016), all cities in Willacy County registered $893,635.56 in local sales taxes, compared with $896,344.95 for the same period in 2015, a decrease of 0.30 percent.

Willacy County government does not collect a local sales tax.

For details of the May 2016 local sales tax figures for all cities, counties, transit systems, and special purpose taxing districts, locate the Monthly Sales Tax Allocation Comparison Summary Reports at the comptroller’s website:

http://www.window.state.tx.us/taxinfo/allocsum/compsum.html

EDINBURG REGIONAL MEDICAL CENTER BEGINS EXPANSION PROJECT TO EASE CAPACITY CONSTRAINTS

Other positive economic news for the city includes the Tuesday, June 28, 2016 announcement regarding planned construction expansion at the South Texas Health System facilities located in Edinburg, according to spokesperson Cari Lambrecht.

“Construction is underway on a $5.2 million expansion project at the Edinburg Regional Medical Center/Edinburg Children’s Hospital campus,” Lambrecht reported. “The hospitals – South Texas Health System facilities – are building out approximately 16,300 square feet of fourth floor shell space to accommodate future growth.”

Edinburg Regional Medical Center was built nearly 20 years ago, and Edinburg Children’s Hospital followed 10 years later. The hospitals are connected and share many services and non-clinical support staff. When Edinburg Children’s Hospital opened in 2006, the fourth floor was left as open space.

Today, with hospital occupancy rates higher than ever and an increase in volume year over year, the time for expansion has come. Edinburg Regional Medical Center is adding and equipping 22 additional rooms.

The existing Inpatient Rehabilitation Unit will be relocated to the fourth floor when the project is completed at the end of 2016, and the 26 rooms on the second floor where the unit currently exists will be converted to medical/surgical beds. The Edinburg Regional Medical Center/Edinburg Children’s Hospital campus will be licensed for 235 beds once the project is complete. When the new floor becomes occupied, the project is expected to add approximately 40 jobs to the market.

“Edinburg Regional Medical Center has a strong reputation for an ongoing commitment to high quality care. Patient demand for services has surpassed the hospital’s current bed capacity,” said Jennifer C. Garza, Chief Executive Officer for Edinburg Regional Medical Center and Edinburg Children’s Hospital. “We have an immediate need for additional medical/surgical beds. This expansion project provides an excellent opportunity for Edinburg Regional to expand and ease capacity constraints.”

The total project cost is estimated to be $5,180,734. Completion of this phase of the project is scheduled for November 2016. No departments will need to be relocated during the construction phase, and patients and visitors should notice only minimal interruption. Additional expansion phases may come at a later date.

The design of the fourth floor will enhance patient flow and upgrade the inpatient rehabilitation unit.

The project will include a therapy gym, daily living training facilities, and a dedicated dining area to encourage patient interaction and facilitate visitation. The therapy gym and dining area will feature large windows so patients can enjoy daylight and views of Edinburg.

A high acoustical ceiling was selected to mitigate noise as well. The finishes are warm and inviting with playful accents and incorporate floor patterns that feature straight lines that patients can follow down the hall and contrasting colored bars as distance markers to assist therapists and patients with progress and establishing milestones. The renovation will use specified zero VOC paints, CRI Green Label Plus Carpets and FloorScore Certified Resilient Flooring. Local trade partners currently include Metro Electric, Marek and Harlingen Glass. More will be added as the project continues.

Edinburg Regional Medical Center’s expansion project is just one of South Texas Health System’s upcoming multi-million dollar investments that will positively impact the Upper Valley’s healthcare landscape. Additional announcements will be released in the near future.

••••••

Cari Lambrecht contributed to this story. For more information on the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation and the City of Edinburg, please log on to http://edinburgedc.com or to http://www.facebook.com/edinburgedc

Share This

Share this post with your friends!