29 Oct Sales Tax Revenue Increases 9.51% because of Stellar Hall of Fame Class
MLB greats such as Ken Griffey Jr., John Smoltz, Bobby Cox, and Chipper Jones along with many others welcomed a new class of Baseball Hall of Fame Inductees to the City of Cooperstown, NY in July 2019. The 2019 Class included Mariano Rivera, Roy Halladay, Mike Mussina and Edgar Martinez. We all knew they were gifted on the diamond, but apparently these legends have an additional talent set – generating increased sales tax revenue for Otsego County and the City of Cooperstown. The Otsego County Treasurer’s Office is reporting that sales tax revenue collected during the 2019 Hall of Fame Induction increased by 9.51% over 2018 levels. In 2018, Otsego County reported $3.4 million in sales tax revenue for the period ending the weekend of the induction. Until now, that amount had been the most generated since 2014.
The City of Cooperstown, New York is home to only about 1,850 individuals, and doesn’t receive much traffic on a day-to-day basis. However, Induction weekend, which is held in July, and the notoriety of the members of the 2019 class brought an influx of tourists willing to open their wallets to local businesses while coming to witness the ceremony. Cooperstown currently has an 8% sales tax rate. With tourists, media, and members of the Hall of Fame in attendance for the event, it’s no surprise as to why this is one of the city’s highest tax generating months.
As would be expected, the influx of people above the normal Induction weekend levels required the Otsego County and the City of Cooperstown to commit more resources to assure the safety of the crowds than it usually does Induction weekend. Having said that, the increase in sales tax revenue still resulted in a net positive for the county. Otsego County Board of Representatives Chairman David Bliss stated the sales tax increase was about $320,000, but the increased cost of public safety officers alone accounted for approximately $12,450. Next year, officials estimate similar or even larger New York local sales tax revenue figures as one of the century’s most prolific players and beloved New York Yankee icon, Derek Jeter, is set to be inducted.