BROWNSVILLE, Texas – Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar ran through some bleak economic statistics during a recent webinar hosted by Brownsville Chamber of Commerce.

Hotel occupancy tax revenues have dropped an incredible 86 percent, he reported.

Hegar pointed out that prior to the coronavirus pandemic, the Texas economy was doing really well.

“The Texas economy was growing. We had sales tax increasing every single month compared to the same month a year ago,” Hegar said.

“However, with the collections we had in April, which reflected the economic activity we had in March, we were down 9.2 percent compared to April of last year. We just reported what the numbers were for May, which was the business activity in April and that was down roughly 13.3 percent. That was one of the largest drops we have had, going back to February 2010 in sales taxes.”

Hegar than ran through some of the other tax collection numbers. 

“Our vehicle motor sales and rental taxes were down 38 percent compared to May of 2019. Motor fuels taxes, which is when you go to the pump, was down 30 percent. That was the steepest decline since 1989. Oil and gas production taxes were down roughly 75 percent each. Our hotel occupancy tax – this is one that is just staggering number – was down 86 percent. That was the largest drop on record, going back to 1982. And our alcohol beverage tax was down 76 percent.”

Esmy Villarreal, president of the Brownsville Chamber introduced Hegar at the start of the webinar and also pitched questions asked by chamber members. 

Editor’s Note: The main image accompanying the above news story shows Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar. (Photo credit: El Paso, Inc.)

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