RAPID CITY, S.D. (KELO) — For the first couple of months of 2023, Rapid City saw an increase in sales tax revenue.
Regardless of the winter storms this year, business has been going well for Who’s Toyhouse in downtown Rapid City.
“This has been a tough winter in general, for the holiday season and for the spring to have to close as many days as we did, but we are having positive numbers so that is really what we want to see,” Somer Kingsbury, Owner of Who’s Toyhouse, said.
Some businesses say they have been faced with other challenges, including construction projects around town and the lack of parking.
“We aren’t necessarily slow, but it’s not a boom, steady sure but it’s a slow steady,” Patti Griffin, Owner of Alternative Fuel Coffee, said.
“Of course there are inconveniences but the good part is that there are a lot of infrastructure projects that are going to be occurring that will be enhancing our infrastructure and making us more welcoming and inviting for years to come,” Daniel Ainslie, Rapid City Finance Officer, said.
Overall the city saw a 5.5% increase during January and February compared to 2022. That sales tax total was over $5 million.
“What it does mean is the significant increase in Rapid City saw in ’21 and ’22 is not softening so while we are not seeing a significant spike, we are being able to keep up with inflation so it’s good news for the finances of Rapid City,” Ainslie said.
With summer tourism season right around the corner, businesses and city officials say they are not sure what to expect this year.
“It’s always a gamble, every year, every day that I open it’s a gamble,” Griffin said.
Last year’s annual sales tax totals were a 6% increase over the 2021 record year.