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Chamber Report: Retail Sales Mixed for First Three Quarters of 2017

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12/28/2017 Release from the Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce:

(Charlottesville, Virginia – December 28) The Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce today released Virginia Department of Taxation retail sales tax data showing mixed retail sales levels in the region over the first three quarters of 2017 compared to the same period in 2016.

Sales were up in Albemarle, Augusta, Fluvanna and Louisa counties, but declined compared to the first three quarters of 2016 in the cities of Charlottesville and Waynesboro, and in Greene County.

The September sales decline of -11.93 percent (-$14 million) in the city of Charlottesville, is of particular interest. Even so, retail sales in the Albemarle-Charlottesville hub have increased +2.7 percent and could approach last year’s 12-month record of $2.74 billion, depending upon holiday sales.

Virginia Department of Taxation sales tax data compiled showed that Albemarle County and Charlottesville, the region’s “retail hub,” accounted for $2.04 billion in total retail sales over the first three quarters of 2017; in the aggregate a total sales increase of +$48 million compared with the $1.992 billion in total sales over the same period in 2016.

During the first three quarters of 2017 (January – September) compared to the same period in 2016, retail sales increased: in Albemarle +7.96 percent; Augusta +2.95 percent; Fluvanna +1.72 percent; and, in Louisa counties +1.12 percent. Retail sales over the same period decreased in the cities of Charlottesville -4.13 percent and Waynesboro -2.34 percent as well as Greene County -4.6 percent.

In addition to the retail associated jobs and private investment, a gain or loss in retail sales equates to a local tax revenue gain or loss. Over calendar year 2016, $27.406 million were collected locally in total local retail sales taxes in Albemarle County and the city of Charlottesville. Over 2016, Albemarle County collected total local retail sales taxes of $15.616 million; a year-to-year gain of +$988,000 v. 2015. The city of Charlottesville collected total local retail sales taxes $11.789 million in 2016; a year-to-year gain of +$545,000 v. 2015.

According to the 2017 Chamber Jobs Report, the employment reporting sector of “Trade, Transportation & Utilities” hold the largest segment of private enterprise jobs, 19,104 or 21.8 percent, – created through private investment and general commercial activity.

The Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to representing private enterprise, promoting business and enhancing the quality of life in the greater Charlottesville communities. Founded in 1913, today the 1,200 chamber member and affiliate member enterprises employ more than 45,000 people in the greater Charlottesville region, representing an estimated total payroll of more than $1.9 billion a year.