Holiday Sales Tax Could Raise Millions For Bono Lake Project


A penny can go a long way. Especially when you're talking hundreds of thousands of shoppers filling up their carts with merchandise ... most of them unknowingly contributing to a million-dollar project that many see as reaping benefits for the county for years to come.

"Many of the store's here are surpassing last year's sales, so it's certainly a strong point or a good sign of what's going to come in the next month or so," said Turtle Creek Mall manager, Jason Whitley.

It could also be a sign of good things to come for the town of Bono, which is set to benefit from a three-month sales tax increase.

The money collected this holiday shopping season will go to fund the Bono Lake Project, which will provide recreation and flood relief for people living in Bono.

"One of the things that everyone was so happy about was that part of the lake was going to be paid for with other people's money," said Craighead County Treasurer, Russell Patton, III.

That money is collected in part by people from outlying counties coming to Jonesboro to shop.

"The smaller counties and the outlying areas surrounding Jonesboro don't have a Christmas surge in retail sales like we do," Patton said.

That surge in retail sales is, of course, something that retailers like the Mall at Turtle Creek benefit from greatly and the City of Bono could benefit from it too.

"If you take a map and you pinpoint Jonesboro and you take a 65 mile radius, we're taking every bit of it in," said Whitley.

The goal for the temporary sales tax was to raise $4 million dollars. At the same time last year, without the tax, they raised $3.4 million.

The sales tax ends on January 1st. We won't have final numbers until February.

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