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Cerritos Report Shows Huge Jump in Sales Tax Revenue


By Brian Hews

The Cerritos Economic Profile, released this past Tuesday, is a report that is prepared on a quarterly basis to conduct market trend analysis and to develop strategies for the city’s business retention.

The profile is comprised of several sections, which includes major revenues of the City, employment, housing, and commercial real estate.

This latest report shows that the city of Cerritos is in a very strong position in relation to 2015 sales tax revenue.

This is in stark contrast and was not mentioned in the staff report behind a proposed half-cent sales tax increase that was released last week, mostly blaming the dissolution of redevelopment for the City’s budget deficit problems.

The sales tax increase was discussed at a meeting this past May 2 that was strangely neither televised nor videotaped.

In the proposed half-cent sales tax agenda report, staff cited “with nondiscretionary expenditures (contract labor, insurance, goods and materials) expected to increase – and revenues anticipated to have plateaued – the city must identify additional revenue sources in order to abate the growth of the deficit and provide funds for infrastructure maintenance.”

But the current economic profile belies the statement “revenues anticipated to have plateaued.”

According to the profile, sales tax revenue has risen for the past four calendar years.

From 2012 to 2013 revenue rose $574,000; from 2013 to 2014 revenue rose $334,000, and from 2014 to 2015 revenue rose a healthy $2.376 million.

The growth in sales tax revenue, the report claims, can be attributed to “renovations and increased in construction activity at the Cerritos Auto Square, the Los Cerritos Center, Plaza 183, and other shopping centers throughout the city.”

But even with these increased revenue numbers, the agenda report behind the half-cent sales tax increase proposal indicated that the current proposed 2016-17 budget projects a $5 million deficit, citing the increase in sheriff’s and public safety expenditures.

The report is certain to raise the ire of Cerritos employees.

According to a report obtained by HMG-CN, Cerritos employee’s last raise was 4% in 2008-09. The next raise was 5 years later for a meager 2%. The current proposed budget pay raise column in the report shows “N/A.”

The report shows payroll data from sixteen cities in Orange and Los Angeles Counties. Over half have received raises totaling over 12.5% since ‘08-’09 with Norwalk, Lakewood, and Whittier gaining the highest increase of 18.5%.

South Gate employees received 15.8%, Irvine 15%, and Orange 12.5%. The report states cost of living, as measured by the Consumer Price Index, has risen 13.4%.

Cerritos and Fullerton employees were last on the list at 6% and 5.5% respectively. The report does not say that Cerritos has not filled, through attrition, 58 positions.

 

Report obtained by HMG-CN outlining payroll raise data from 16 different cities. Cerritos is third city from the top. The last column on the right is the total amount of raises since '08-'09. The shaded row is the Consumer Price Index, showing a 13.4% increase since '08-'09.

Report obtained by HMG-CN outlining payroll raise data from 16 different cities. Cerritos is third city from the top. The last column on the right is the total amount of raises since ’08-’09. The shaded row is the Consumer Price Index, showing a 13.4% increase since ’08-’09.

 

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6 Responses to Cerritos Report Shows Huge Jump in Sales Tax Revenue

  1. Who's not shopping Cerritos Reply

    June 4, 2016 at 4:10 pm

    City of Cerritos already avoids contributing fully to city sales tax – which is working against residents.

    City has given, loaned, pimped, or whatever term is accurate to bestow tax dollars to help businesses in the redevelopment areas that include town center, mall, and auto center.

    Not only should this money primary have been used instead to directly benefit Cerritos residents by trimming trees, fixing sidewalks and roads, youth and senior programs — the city is pouring salt in the wound of residents — by not, as $50 a plate steak, on the tax payer dime, eating Council-leach Jim Edwards is fond of saying, “Shop Cerritos.”

    One example is that the city has poured millions of dollars into the auto center and has also farmed out auto repair business outside the city limits. A quick look at a list of vendors payed by the city should verify how much money has left the city.

    If the city needs to raise the sales tax rate can someone please tell me again what the city is gaining from sending tax dollars to the auto center? Because, evidently the city appears to not want to, “Shop Cerritos,”

    • Jim McIntyre Reply

      September 10, 2016 at 11:08 am

      I wonder if one could find out if anyone on the city council receives donations from the auto square. This would be pay for play. To expose this would embarrass counsel members and maybe stop it. These council members can’t act with impunity like the Clintons can.

  2. Senior Retireee Reply

    May 21, 2016 at 5:35 pm

    Why did Ret. Beacky, CPA, presently serving on Cerritos Planning Commission, receive bonus $300K to leave her accounting job for city.

    Why did Ret. Councilwoman Needham and Councilman Hughlett both receive cash boyouts of $.5M Each, as they did not want their medical Ins to grave, which was provided by city at no charge to the council members? If they do not want free lifelong medical insurance, we should not give them a boyout.

    Conflict of Interest, when free medical insurance to grave, is voted by councilpersons, should be voted on by the public voters in the city.

    If anyone attends the Memorial Day Cerritos Event, the dumb memorial sculpture, was the brainstorm idea behind Mrs. Hughlett, Ret. teacher from Norwalk- La Mirada USD. Like the location for the memorial wall, DO NOT LIKE THE SCULPTURE ART. Here again, $.5M art wasted from General Funds. Event on Memorial Day cost the city grand total of $5K-$10K.

  3. Big Money Reply

    May 21, 2016 at 4:19 pm

    “The Gap” good point….The newspaper should request the city’s anticipated retirement payout for employees ready to retire in the next few years. Ask how much the anticipated payout will be for accumulated vacation, sick, and holiday pay. Also, ask to see what recently retired employees took when they left. Some of these people may be getting paid $50 plus per hour when they leave for hours they banked years ago when they were making $15 an hour.

  4. The Gap Reply

    May 19, 2016 at 5:56 pm

    The information on city raises is a bit misleading to the public. Most cities are over staffed with part-time employees and under staffed with full time employees.

    Part time employees rarely share in the wage increase. They can work for the city for for 10-years and never receive a pay rate increase and have ZERO benefits. All while full timers in management can end up retiring with 1,000’s of hours in banked holiday, vacation, and sick pay. This could easily equate to over $100,000 payout at retirement

  5. Hummer Reply

    May 17, 2016 at 7:03 am

    My question, city said they are not filling vacated jobs in the city, so how much does this help the employment payroll part of the budget? Why did the city go off the deep end and acquire an auto museum? $3M task to create said auto museum, could be well spent to retro fit the city’s PUBLIC WORKS.

    cerritospublicworks.blogspot.com/

    Many cities, council and commissioners received no stipend or income from elected/appointed positions. Why does Cerritos council seek yearly income, swanky dinner prior to all council meetings and have PPO Medical Insurance to grave. Both city of La Palma and Palos Verdes, councils receive no financial income.

    After viewing Cerritos Economic Commission I was shocked. CEC said that this last quarter, real estate prices in Cerritos is falling, where other cities are not. Feel the heartland of America does not want to settle in Cerritos anymore; Cerritos has too many restrictions to live here compared to other cities, plus the neighborhoods are just getting dirty compared to other cities. There’s no more diversity in Cerritos, and without Asians buying here, property values are going down. We have lost allot of Staples over the past 60 yrs, staples which attracted buyers to this city, to live comfortably.

    We need to add more high-end car dealerships, remember a lot of the high-end cars are not being sold in Cerritos, and those are the ones that are Big Tax stuffers for the Christmas stocking hanging in the bank. The high-end car sales, really help generate money for the general fund. The soft store Goods, don’t produce enough sales tax, the money they do produce, is spent within seconds. If you remember, Frank Yokohama, former planning commissioner and was running for city council person, suggested that the City have an on-line clicker, telling the audience how much money we spend in a city per minute. It would be mind-boggling; plus encourage transparency, which Cerritos has been void on for past 60 yrs.

    If the city tries to implement another sales tax exclusively for the city, 90703 is already in Los Angeles County Which is higher than Orange County, the two taxes, will only drive Shoppers into the surrounding cities, because Orange County has an 8% sales tax; Los Angeles County has a 9% sales tax. We have already lost many furniture stores, more believe if the city implements another half percent sales tax. We need to have a sales tax holiday, compared to many Inland Empire cities.

    Here is free link, first time city is offering this, graphs how Cerritos rates with other cities.

    www.cerritos.us/BUSINESSES/_pdfs/economic_profile_2016_spring.pdf

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