The increase in Erath County’s payment from the state comptroller, based on local sales tax revenues, was almost quadruple the statewide average.

State Comptroller Susan Combs announced Friday that February state and local sales tax revenues, driven by consumer spending in Texas, increased 8.8 percent compared to last year and are up 7.1 percent for the first half of the state’s fiscal year. State sales tax revenues for the month totaled $1.79 billion.

Comptroller Combs sent March sales tax payments of $293.2 million to Texas cities, up 9.2 percent compared to March 2007.

Calendar year-to-date, city sales tax allocations are running 6.8 percent higher than last year. Texas counties received sales tax payments of $26.8 million, up 10.5 percent compared to one year ago. Calendar year-to-date, county sales tax allocations are 7.2 percent higher than last year.

Erath County will receive a payment of $173,758.31, an increase of $48,535.84 or 38.75 percent compared to last year.

Combs said “although growth is slower than the two previous fiscal years, increase in state sales tax revenues continues to grow at a steady pace.”

State sales tax revenue for February and March payments made to local governments Friday primarily represent sales that occurred in January.

The city of Stephenville will receive $348,291.15, which is $29,653.24 or 9.3 percent more than last year. So far this year, Stephenville has received a total of $1,246,830.67 in sales tax payments, an 11.24 percent increase over the same period last year.

Dublin will receive $21,074.74, an increase of $1,364.08 or 6.92 percent compared to last year. To-date in 2008, the city of Dublin has received $71,345.11, a decrease of 5.57 percent compared to the same period in 2007.

Other area cities and their payments this month: Hico - $14,449.72, up 23.61 percent from the same period last year; Granbury - $417,410.82, a 9.73 percent increase from the same period in 2007; and Glen Rose - $154,352.06, a 233.75 percent increase from the same period last year.

The comptroller’s office delivered a total of $436.1 million in March sales tax payments to Texas cities, counties, 10 transit systems and 126 special purpose taxing districts, a 9.9 percent increase compared to March 2007. That increase was higher than the total sales tax revenue due to small changes in local tax rates.

The 126 special purpose taxing districts around the state received $14.2 million in sales tax revenue, up 20.1 percent compared to last March. Ten local transit systems received $101.7 million, up 10.6 percent.

For details of March sales tax payments to individual cities, counties, transit systems and special purpose districts, locate the Monthly Sales and Use Tax Allocation Comparison Summary Reports online at www.window.state.tx.us/taxinfo/allocsum/compsum.html.

The Comptroller’s next sales tax allocation will be made on Friday, April 11.