Aspen’s December sales cap off solid retail year |

Aspen’s December sales cap off solid retail year

Aspen Times staff report
Aspen, CO Colorado

ASPEN – Aspen got very little snow in December, but that didn’t seem to bother people spending money in the city during the atypically dry month.

Retail sales totaled $77.74 million, a whopping 13 percent increase over December 2010’s $68.77 million, according to the city’s end-of-the-year consumption tax report.

Eleven of 12 retail categories – including construction, accommodations, restaurants and bars, food and drug, liquor and sports equipment – saw sales increases. Automobile sales were the lone blemish, with a 56 percent drop in purchases.

“Construction had the largest increase in December (50.8 percent), maintaining the trend from October and November,” Aspen Finance Director Don Taylor wrote in the report, which was released Thursday. “Accommodations, building off of a strong November, showed a 15.1 percent increase from 2010.”

The 2011 year-to-date figures show that sales surpassed the half-billion-dollar mark. Retailers collectively reported January-to-December sales of $502.78 million, a 7.4 percent increase compared with 2010’s $467.95 million.

The construction, luxury goods, clothing, sports equipment and miscellaneous categories all realized double-digit percentage increases.

The report also records 2011’s collections from the city’s 2.1 percent sales tax as $10.53 million, a 7.4 percent increase over 2011’s $9.80 million.

Increases in other tax collections were mentioned in the report.

“With a strong December, the tourist promotion lodging tax ended the year up 217 percent compared to 2010. The transportation lodging tax finished the year with a 6 percent increase from the prior year,” the report states.

Meanwhile, Aspen’s portion of Pitkin County’s sales tax for November (which is one month behind city collection statistics because they are collected by the state) was up 8 percent from November 2010 and 7 percent for the full year.


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