Retails sales are up 17 percent year-over-year in San Juan Capistrano.
That’s the report the City Council heard Tuesday.
The city far outperformed retail sales statewide, which only rose 6.8 percent for the same one-year period ending Sept. 30, 2012, the most recent figures available, said Cindy Russell, the city’s chief financial officer.
Even taking a more regional look, coastal Southern California, from Santa Barbara to San Diego, only had an increase of 6.3 percent in the past year, Russell said.
Breaking it down by sector, sales at local department stores climbed the highest, 53.6 percent in a year, Russell’s report shows. New car sales were up 20.9 percent on the year, general retail 28.5 percent and sales at local gas stations rose 12.5 percent.
The numbers were part of an update on the city’s budget. Because the city receives a good portion of its funds from sales tax, as well as property taxes and building permits, the city budget becomes a good barometer of the local economy.
Because of construction at two housing developments – Valinda near San Juan Hills High and Campanilla at San Juan Hills – the issuance of building permits is also way up, Russell said.
So far, there have been 73 single family home building permits pulled this fiscal year, which began in July and ends June 30, Russell said. Last year at this time, there were nine.
With a new hotel now online for a full year, revenues from the city’s “transient occupancy tax” are performing exactly as city officials expected, bringing in more than $300,000 so far.