Tuesday, May 28, 2013 | 4:11 p.m.
Nevada’s taxable sales — one indicator of the economy — grew by 5 percent in March, the 33rd consecutive month of an increase.
The state Department of Taxation reported Tuesday taxable sales reached $4.1 billion, up from the $3.9 billion in March 2012.
The report said the largest increases statewide were in general merchandise stores, up 18.6 percent; food services and drinking places, with an increase of 5.3 percent; and auto sales, which had a gain of 7.4 percent.
Clark County reported $2.98 billion in taxable sales, a gain of 6.9 percent from March 2012. It bounced back from a decline of 0.1 percent in February.
Business in general merchandise in Clark County grew by 16.4 percent; furniture sales jumped 13.4 percent. The bar and restaurant trade, after suffering a 4.4 percent decline in February, increased by 5.7 percent in March.
The department said building material sales fell by 8.4 percent, but the auto business gained 8.2 percent in Clark County.
Twelve of Nevada's 17 counties recorded increased sales in March. Only Elko, Esmeralda, Lincoln, Lyon and White Pine counties suffered a decline.
Sales in Washoe County rose by 7.1 percent, and Carson City business jumped 10.9 percent. The restaurant and bar business in Carson City was up 7.3 percent with the Legislature and the flock of lobbyists in town.
The collections of the state’s portion of the sales tax reached $80.5 million, up 6.9 percent from the same month a year ago. For the first nine months of this fiscal year, tax collections are down $3.2 million from the amount predicted by the Economic Forum.
The department said collections from the cigarette tax for the nine months of this fiscal year are $41,000 above estimates, but the liquor tax is $773,000 below the projections for the nine months.