October Tax Collections Fall Under Budgeted Expectations

TRENTON – New Jersey’s October revenue collections were 3.1 percent under budgeted amounts, the state treasury department announced today. The drop off was blamed in part on weather-related disruptions of both the state’s normal economic activity and its tax collection efforts.

“We know the severe weather led to relaxation of deadlines for tax payments, hindered travel that generates economic activity and caused power outages that forced some taxpayers to curtail their business operations,” State Treasurer Andrew Sidamon-Eristoff said. “Still, we can’t be 100 percent certain of the real impact on revenue until we have figures on collections from a month when weather was not a factor. The last two months of revenue collections have both been impacted significantly by multiple disruptions from uncommonly severe weather.”

October income tax collections were 2.1 percent below predictions and sales taxes were 3 percent under forecasts. Corporation business taxes were 10.4 percent above predicted levels.

“Retail sales are the biggest driver of sales tax collections,” said Dr. Charles Steindel, the state Treasury’s chief economist. “Severe weather discouraged shopping both in late September, and in early and late October. Given how long some citizens were without power after the snowstorm, New Jersey is likely to continue to feel weather-related economic effects into November.”

Collections of all major revenue sources are below budgeted amounts for the year to date. Income taxes are 2.6 percent below budget, sales taxes 3 percent below and the corporation business tax, 4.5 percent below projections. Tax collections are still higher than last year, however.

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