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Recession continues to hurt sales

Evanston’s sales tax revenue last year was down about 3 percent from the level of 2005.

Evanston’s sales tax revenue last year was down about 3 percent from the level of 2005.

The decline, shown in state reports compiled by the Evanston Chamber of Commerce, is in actual dollars, before adjusting for inflation, which has increased costs by about 10 percent since 2005.

The decline for Evanston was slightly less than for four other North Shore communities — Glenview, Highland Park, Skokie and Wilmette — which on average showed a decline of just under 4 percent in 2009 compared to 2005.

But Evanston’s performance for the year was worse than that of the City of Chicago, which saw an increase of 4 percent for the year, although Chicago’s performance dropped substantially in the third and fourth quarters.

For the full year, Evanston received $13.9 million in sales tax revenue in 2009, compared to $14.3 million in 2005.

Sales in January this year were about the same as those for January 2005 for Evanston and the other North Shore communities, while Chicago showed an increase of nearly 10 percent.

For February, sales were down nearly 9 percent in Evanston, and down nearly 10 percent in the other four North Shore communities, while sales in Chicago were up nearly 5 percent from 2005 levels.

Figures for March are due from the state early next month. 

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