February 22, 2010
DiNapoli: Sales Tax Collections Worst in Recent History
Weak Performance Expected to Continue This Year
Counties across New York State, including New York City, saw one of the sharpest declines in sales tax collections on record, according to a report released by State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli. The report, which compares 2009 to 2008 collections, found a 5.9 decrease in collections statewide. Only four counties saw an increase but these numbers were primarily due to administrative and technical adjustments, not better economic performance.
“This is yet another sign that the Great Recession is having a continuing impact on our communities across New York,” said DiNapoli. “These numbers are sobering. Fortunately, many local governments have taken sometimes painful budgetary steps to stave off disaster. It’s a struggle, but all levels of government have to make every taxpayer dime count.”
Among the report’s findings:
DiNapoli had cautioned local governments in a 2008 report against over reliance on sales tax revenues, due to their sensitivity to economic downturns. In addition to tracking economic performance in regions across the state, DiNapoli has created a website to allow taxpayers to track financial activities of their local governments.