Statistics recently released by the Ardmore Chamber of Commerce and the City of Ardmore’s Finance Department show that 2018 was a successful year for business in Ardmore.
According to the Ardmore Chamber of Commerce, retail sales in 2018 totaled $558.3 Million through the month of November, the most recent month for which data is available. This is an 8.5 percent increase over 2017 when sales totaled $514.5 million during the same period. Sales totals in November alone were $50.2 million, which is an increase of 6.36 percent over 2017’s total of $47.2 million.
Sales tax revenues reflect this trend. So far in fiscal year 2018-2019 which began on July 1, the City of Ardmore has collected over $5.5 million in sales tax. During the same period in fiscal year 2017-2018, sales tax revenues were just over $5 million. Sales tax revenues collected in December totaled just over $792,000 an increase of more than $30,000 from 2017.
Both Ardmore City Manager J.D. Spohn and Ardmore Chamber of Commerce President Mita Bates attribute a portion of this success to the recent construction project and “turnaround” at the Valero Ardmore Refinery. During the turnaround, which took place late summer through the early fall, thousands of additional workers came to the city to make scheduled improvements and renovations. The additional workers filled area hotels and R.V. parks while spending money in local stores and restaurants.
Spohn said there was more to the city’s current financial success than simply the turnaround alone.
“When Valero is having their turnaround, that generates more sales tax, but really that was winding down by November,” Spohn said. “I think it’s just people feel pretty good about the economy and are spending a little bit more money. Hopefully it’s also because we can offer more options for our residents and visitors in our restaurants and retail establishments.”
Spohn said new fast food restaurants and the upcoming Market Street at Ardmore were examples of the city’s recent growth in retail options.
“For the (fiscal) year to date, we’re up over nine percent in sales tax collections, so that’s a good, strong sign and really encouraging to us,” Spohn said. “We hope that trend continues, and we’re going do our part to keep it going.”