Retail sales maintaining steady growth
"There's a lot of renewed spirit in Mountain Home," Pierce said. "It's growth we didn't have before."
Mize said that the economy looks like it is finally turning around, with home sales and increased hiring driving the retail sales. With Hobby Lobby and Buffalo Wild Wings opening their doors soon, she said the hope is the trend will continue.
Mize and Pierce both agree that visitors are still an important part of the area's economy.
"The barometer depends on how much traffic we get in the area," Pierce said. He added that it's not only local people driving the local economy, but visitors to the area are a key component. He said Baxter County and Mountain Home's natural beauty is one of its economic boons.
Pierce also added that the city has to adapt with the ever-changing economy. He said that relying on the old ways of doing things doesn't work.
"I feel that people have sort of grasped that," Pierce said.
The retail sales numbers for May are actually from March, according to Mize. The statistics are two months behind, so the actual May retail sales tax numbers won't be in until July. What the numbers do show is that despite a cold March, retail sales kept growing.
Arkansas sales tax is 6.5 percent, with Mountain Home and Baxter County having sales taxes of 1 percent each. This means that the residents of Mountain Home pay approximately 8.5 percent total in sales tax. Some Arkansas municipalities pay up to 11.5 percent in total sales tax, according to TaxRates.com.