MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - Some Mobile City Council members said the one cent sales tax is not bringing in the revenue that was predicted.
When the council approved the tax last October it was expected to generate about $30 million over the fiscal year.
We're half way through that period, so some council members say the revenue from the tax should be around $15 million. Instead, they said it's only half that amount.
According to Finance Director Barbara Malkove the tax revenue is not coming in like the city had predicted or hoped.
"It doesn't quite meet our projections for the total $30 million percent, but we are down," Malkove said.
City Council Member Bess Rich wants to know what happened to the doom and gloom that was predicted if the tax increase was not approved.
"As you recall, the administration was pushing for needing an increase so I don't understand why we're not hearing the need again, if indeed we don't have the taxes that they were shooting for based on adding the extra penny," Rich said.
Council Member William Carroll said the city is getting less than half the extra tax dollars it predicted.
"We are a year, or half way through the fiscal year with the city, and we were projecting it to be at $15 million of expected revenue, and we've only realized about $7 (million)," Carroll said.
Malkove said people are spending less nationwide.
But Fred Richardson said there's another reason the tax is down in Mobile's general fund budget.
"The council decided to put some money away for capital, for economic development, so all of it didn't go toward the general fund. So it would look like we aren't doing as good as we did last year even with the penny, looking at the general fund. It was the council who said let's not put it in the general fund. So it's a self fulfilling prophecy to take it out the general fund then prophecy that the general fund is not looking as as good as it ought to," Richardson said.
Mayor Sam Jones was not at Tuesday's city council meeting.
The finance director said the city will have an audit by the end of the month that will include the numbers and information some of the council members requested.
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