The city of Shavano Park is experiencing a huge sales tax bump after an energy company set up shop within the city.
Shavano Park welcomed a new business to the community, Chesapeake Energy, which put its regional offices in the small town in September of 2011. Since the energy company set up shop in Shavano Park, City Manager Kyle McCain said they’ve seen an increase of double or triple the amount in monthly sales tax checks.
"We're a small city. We don't collect a lot in sales tax, so this bump, to us, was a huge thing," McCain said.
When the checks first starting rolling in around October of last year, McCain said he initially thought they were a mistake.
"We know what retail we have in town,” McCain said. “Shavano Park does not have a lot of retail. And so, in trying to figure out where it was coming from, to know whether or not we can spend it, we didn't have any answers."
After checking with the State Comptroller’s Office, McCain was able to verify that the money was indeed coming from Chesapeake Energy.
McCain said the city normally rakes in just under $200,000 in sales tax per year, but thanks to this new business, that figure will now be around $500,000.
It's an unexpected surprise, but one the city welcomes with open arms.
"It allows us to make decisions that will make life easier in the future for the citizens,” McCain said. “We won't have to raise taxes to do some things that we might have otherwise. "
In addition to not having to raise taxes, McCain said the city also plans to pay off some bonds and replace some equipment and city vehicles with that extra money.