SALES TAX: Small hike adds up slowly

Last month, state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli reported sales-tax revenues went up in Chautauqua County in 2017. Of course, that’s good news in a couple of senses.

First, it seems as though we are buying more in the county. Second, it boosts our governments, which prove on a regular basis they like spending your money.

DiNapoli’s numbers show sales tax revenues at $64.1 million for 2017 for this county. That is an increase of 3.98 percent from 2016.

But don’t forget. While the county portion of your property taxes has decreased minimally, you are likely making it up on the sales-tax side. This premise is based on the fact that everyone gets dinged when buying a car, appliance or other item from a local store.

The increased sales tax from 7.5 percent to 8 percent agreed to by county legislators in 2015 is something that almost seems harmless. But sales tax revenues keep rising in a county where population keeps declining.

Yes, we’re paying more — and we barely realize it until we see DiNapoli’s numbers.