$3 Million Doesn’t Compute

P.R.I.Z.E. has searched for documentation of any nature to support the claims, which are being publicized as fact, that a Cave Creek Walmart would generate $3 Million dollars per year in sales tax revenue for the Town. During our search, we came across the“Friends of Cave Creek’s” website. P.R.I.Z.E. expected to find our opposing PAC’s website containing significant documentation to support these revenue claims–it did not.

In “The Issues” section of the Friends of Cave Creek’s website, the topic of sales tax revenue is addressed. The following is verbage from that page:

Sales Tax Revenue and Retention: Everyday, the Town of Cave Creek loses sales tax dollars to surrounding communities when residents are forced to shop outside town limits for groceries and basic needs. Voting “YES” on Props 400 and 401 will keep our sales tax dollars in Cave Creek and it will bring new sales tax revenue to our community.

This statement surprisingly omits any mention of Walmart producing $3 Million dollars in sales tax revenue for the town of Cave Creek. In fact, the entire Friends of Cave Creek’s website does not mention any sales tax dollar figure that Walmart would produce. Why is it there is not one shred of documentation on the Friends of Cave Creek’s website to support their claim of “$3 Million dollars in sales tax revenue” if it were, in fact, the truth? If the $3 Million dollar claim were true, their website would be the appropriate place to tout the Walmart financial data to prove the supporters of Walmart correct and bring their opposing citizens on board.

It was also discovered during our search that this $3 Million dollar claim does not compute. The following were our sources to back up our contradictions to their claims:

    • based on Walmart’s financial filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), this $3 Million dollar figure for sales tax revenue is not possible.

    • there are 10 Walmart stores within a 20-mile radius of Cave Creek and half of these stores are Supercenters (186,000+ sq. ft.). None of these towns, in which the 10 stores are located, has reported Walmart generating the same percentage in sales tax revenue for their town that the Cave Creek Walmart supporters are claiming for our Town. In fact, they were all considerably much less.

    • the Town’s new economic model, the White Paper, forecasts the Town receiving $3.8 million dollars per year in sales tax revenue–but not from Walmart. This sales tax revenue forecast is based on a 500,000 sq. ft. store. The square footage listed for the Cave Creek Walmart is 128,000 sq. ft. If you do the calculations based on the forecast, it computes to be about $975,000 for the Walmart.

    • in an article about a proposed Walmart in the town of Ventura, CA., with a sales tax rate of 7.25%—more than double the sales tax rate of Cave Creek—their town council expects its Walmart to generate only $350,000 – $500,000 per year in sales tax revenue. The Ventura Walmart is 45% larger than the proposed Cave Creek Walmart, yet the projected sales tax revenue that pro-Walmart supporters are claiming will be generated by a Cave Creek Walmart is almost five times higher than that of the one proposed in Ventura, CA.Ventura has a population of 106,000–the customer base for the Cave Creek Walmart is 35,000.

    • in an MSNMoney.com article, a Walmart spokesman is quoted as saying that three Walmart stores in the surrounding Ventura county area “generated $1.8 million in sales tax revenue for those communities.” That equates to approximately $600,000.00 per store. Yet, according to Cave Creek’s mayor and town council, our Cave Creek Walmart is expected to generate five times the sales tax revenue that EACH of those three California Walmarts generated for their town.

P.R.I.Z.E. invites anyone to contact us with documentation to prove the claim that a Cave Creek Walmart would generate $3 Million dollars in sales tax revenue each year for the town of Cave Creek. P.R.I.Z.E. will gladly publish this documentation, unedited, on our website.