Select Page

20161115a1

Featured: University of Texas Rio Grande Valley students Selene Salinas and Jorge Calderón present their research on the effect of economic variables in voting behaviors, during the Border Economic Development and Entrepreneurship Symposium (BEDES) on Wednesday, November 9, 2016, at the Embassy Suites McAllen Convention Center. The symposium was organized by the UTRGV Robert C. Vackar College of Business and Entrepreneurship, the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas and the McAllen Chamber of Commerce. The Edinburg Mayor, Edinburg City Council, and Edinburg Economic Development Corporation lobby the Texas Legislature and the UT System Board of Regents for advances at UTRGV and the UTRGV School of Medicine in Edinburg.

Photograph By PAUL CHOY

Edinburg continues to lead major Valley economies with 4.54 percent growth rate from January through September 2016, compared with the same period last year, while statewide, all cities combined showed only a 0.9 percent increase, according to the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts. For the month of September 2016, Edinburg’s retail economy – as measured by local sales taxes generated from purchases of eligible goods and services – had the second-best showing among the Valley’s largest cities, coming in with a 3.70 percent improvement over the month of September 2015. Those figures are based on sales made in September 2016 by businesses that report tax monthly, and sales made in July, August and September by quarterly filers. The local sales tax data is among the latest economic barometers featured in a detailed summary provided by the state comptroller’s office, which released retail sales figures on Wednesday, November 9, 2016. During the first nine months of 2016, Edinburg’s retail economy produced $19,526,679.52 in local sales taxes, compared with $18,676,992.00 for January through September 2015, representing an improvement of 4.54 percent. For September 2016, Edinburg’s retail economy generated $1,933,808.59 in local sales taxes, compared with $1,864,640.98 during the same period in 2015, representing the improvement of 3.70 percent, also according to the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts.

••••••

Edinburg continues to lead major Valley economies with 4.54 percent growth rate from January through September 2016, compared with same period in 2015, reports Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts

By DAVID A. DÍAZ
Legislativemedia@aol.com

Edinburg continues to lead major Valley economies with 4.54 percent growth rate from January through September 2016, compared with the same period last year, while statewide, all cities combined showed only a 0.9 percent increase, according to the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts.

For the month of September 2016, Edinburg’s retail economy – as measured by local sales taxes generated from purchases of eligible goods and services – had the second-best showing among the Valley’s largest cities, coming in with a 3.70 percent improvement over the month of September 2015.

Those figures are based on sales made in September 2016 by businesses that report tax monthly, and sales made in July, August and September by quarterly filers.

The local sales tax data is among the latest economic barometers featured in a detailed summary provided by the state comptroller’s office, which released retail sales figures on Wednesday, November 9, 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 Mayor Richard García as President, Harvey Rodríguez, Jr. as Vice President, and Elías Longoria, Jr. Richard Rupert, and Dr. Peter Dabrowski as Members.

Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar announced on Wednesday, November 9, that cities, counties, transit systems and special purpose taxing districts combined generated $737.9 million in local sales tax allocations in September 2016, which represents 0.8 percent more than in September 2015.

“The cities of San Antonio, Fort Worth and Plano saw noticeable increases in sales tax allocations,” Hegar said. “The cities of Houston and Midland saw significant decreases in sales tax allocations.”

Pharr had the best showing for all major Valley cities for the month of September 2016, registering a 6.56 percent improvement over September 2015.

Based on local sales taxes generated, McAllen had the best showing in terms of revenue for September 2016 ($5,211,110.38), followed by Brownsville ($3,141,566.17), Harlingen ($1,949,245.39), and Edinburg ($1,933,808.59).

During the first nine months of 2016, Edinburg’s retail economy produced $19,526,679.52 in local sales taxes, compared with $18,676,992.00 for January through September 2015, representing an improvement of 4.54 percent.

For September 2016, Edinburg’s retail economy generated $1,933,808.59 in local sales taxes, compared with $1,864,640.98 during the same period in 2015, representing the improvement of 3.70 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 SEPTEMBER 2016 AND JANUARY THROUGH SEPTEMBER 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 for September 2016 and January through September 2016:

September 2016 compared with September 2015

McAllen: $5,211,110.38, down 2.65 percent compared with September 2015 ($5,353,329.36);
Brownsville: $3,141,566.17, down 0.71 percent compared with September 2015 ($3,164,236.54);
Harlingen: $1,949,245.39, up one percent compared with September 2015 ($1,929,883.91);
Edinburg: $1,933,808.59, up 3.70 percent compared with September 2015 ($1,864,640.98);
Pharr: $1,457,435.70, up 6.56 percent compared with September 2015 ($1,367,611.30);
Mission: $1,299,416.00, up 2.70 percent compared with September 2015 ($1,265,199.32); and
Weslaco: $1,029,668.89, up 2.99 percent compared with September 2015 ($999,719.55).

January through September 2016

McAllen: $55,857,845.62, down 3.91 percent compared with January through September 2015
($58,136,660.58);
Brownsville: $34,216,129.36, up 2.21 percent compared with January through September 2015 ($33,473,517.17);
Harlingen: $20,855,548.17, up 2.42 percent compared with January through September 2015 ($20,362,677.64);
Edinburg: $19,526,679.52, up 4.54 percent compared with January through September 2015 ($18,676,992.00);
Pharr: $15,473,886.47, up 2.78 percent compared with January through September 2015 ($15,055,073.30);
Mission: $13,952,961.06, down 0.21 percent compared with January through September 2015 ($13,982,435.25); and
Weslaco: $10,797,941.83, down 0.87 percent compared with January through September 2015 ($10,892,934.69).

All cities in Hidalgo County reported a total of $13,108,334.14 in local sales taxes during September 2016, compared with $12,930,102.47 in September 2015, an increase of 1.38 percent. Year-to-date (January through September 2016), all cities in Hidalgo County registered $139,957,708.97 in local sales taxes, compared with $140,510,627.31 for the same nine months in 2015, a decrease of 0.39 percent.

Hidalgo County government does not collect a local sales tax.

All cities in Cameron County generated $6,178,761.95 in local sales taxes during September 2016, compared with $6,231,707.10 in September 2015, a decrease of 0.85 percent. Year-to-date (January through September 2016), all cities in Cameron County registered $67,317,463.87 in local sales taxes, compared with $65,533,905.34 for the same period in 2015, an increase of 2.72 percent.

Cameron County government does not collect a local sales tax.

All cities in Starr County produced $332,036.18 in local sales taxes during September 2016, compared with $363,762.91 in September 2015, a decrease of 8.72 percent. Year-to-date (January through September 2016), all cities in Starr County registered $3,818,359.67 in local sales taxes, compared with $3,901,985.14 for the same period in 2015, a decrease of 2.14 percent.

Starr County government does not collect a local sales tax.

All cities in Willacy County produced $126,737.62 in local sales taxes during September 2016, compared with $139,176.46 during the same month in 2015, a decrease of 8.94 percent. Year-to-date (January through September 2016), all cities in Willacy County registered $1,379,411.13 in local sales taxes, compared with $1,428,575.00 for the same period in 2015, a decrease of 3.44 percent.

Willacy County government does not collect a local sales tax.

For details of the September 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:

https://www.comptroller.texas.gov/transparency/local/allocations/sales-tax/

UTRGV, FEDERAL RESERVE BANK OF DALLAS FOCUS ON BORDER ECONOMICS AT ANNUAL BORDER ECONOMICS, DEVELOPMENT AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP SYMPOSIUM

The presidents of 11 South Texas banks got to share their thoughts on the morning-after impact of the recent presidential election, during the annual Border Economics, Development and Entrepreneurship Symposium (BEDES) held on Wednesday, November 9 at the Embassy Suites Hotel in McAllen.

Most agreed uncertainty lingers about the long-term impact of Donald Trump’s election, but anticipated welcome relief from some of the new regulations on the banking industry initiated during the Obama administration and a possible raise in interest rates, which will be good for savers but result in higher costs for borrowers.

“Hopefully, it will be easier for us to do business and do more business,” said Jason Leal of BBVA Compass Bank.

The roundtable of bankers, who answered other questions regarding their impressions of the local economy based on commercial and mortgage loan activity at their branches, was one of two held during BEDES, which was co-sponsored by The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley’s Department of Economics and Finance in the Robert C. Vackar College of Business and Entrepreneurship, the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas and the McAllen Chamber of Commerce.

The symposium featured a keynote address by Carlos Marín, founder and CEO of Ambiotec Engineering Group Inc., and an outlook on the Texas economy by Keith Phillips, Assistant Vice President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, San Antonio Branch, as well as a labor market analysis by Roberto Coronado, Vice President in Charge and Senior Economist of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, El Paso Branch.

Phillips, who illustrated his presentation with charts and graphs, said despite the decline in oil prices, the Texas economy has held up and continued to grow. In terms of jobs growth, he said, Texas generally grows faster than the nation.

“You need to look at the long term factors – like the cost of living here and the low cost of doing business,” said Phillips, who also compared various economic growth factors in several MSA areas of the state.

During symposium breaks, UTRGV business students were able to present their research to the Federal Reserve officials, bankers and other business leaders, McAllen Chamber officials and UTRGV faculty in attendance.

Ironically, a research poster – presented by business college students Selene Salinas, Jorge Calderón, Alicia Gómez, Isaac Reyes, Christopher Gallegos, Abel Sánchez, José Tolentino and Saúl Ventura – revealed the effect of economic variables, on voting behaviors, which estimated the percentage of Democratic vote in this year’s election and the resulting loss by this year’s Democratic candidate.

“Based on our research, we predicted Trump would win and we were right,” said Gómez, a junior economics major.

The students said BEDES gave them a great opportunity to network with the Federal Reserve officials and local bank presidents and representatives.

“This was the first time I have been to one of these events and it is a learning experience,” said Calderón, a management major. “Everyone here is very experienced and they know what they are talking about. They are saying there is a good economic outlook for the region, and promise for the area. So that is very good for us.”

“I like learning from the comments I’ve heard from the people here,” Gómez said. “I want to be one of those bank presidents in the future.”

Both Dr. Jorge Vidal, UTRGV economics lecturer and one of the organizers of BEDES, and Steve Ahlenius, President and CEO of the McAllen Chamber of Commerce, were excited about the opportunity the event provided for local business people and UTRGV students to learn more about the local economic outlook and hear the many perspectives bankers brought to their roundtable discussions.

“We also have the panel on entrepreneurship, which continues to be a big push not only for our community but the entire region,” Ahlenius said. “And for the students, it’s a chance to pitch, which is a big part of how to sell ideas and a great experience for them. We are excited about this great partnership with UTRGV, the Federal Reserve and the McAllen Chamber.”

PHOTO GALLERY: https://www.flickr.com/gp/utrgvnews/z14647

••••••

Gail Fagan and Wayne Beckermann 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!