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May 19, 2009



DiNapoli: Tax Revenues Lower Than Expected

State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli today reported tax revenues declined even more than anticipated in April. General Fund revenues of $4.8 billion, including transfers, were $3.8 billion or 44 percent less than last year and $239.1 million below the Governor’s April 28 projections.

“This was a poor start to the fiscal year,” DiNapoli said. “It’s been less than a month since the state’s financial plan was released, and General Fund revenues are already off nearly a quarter of a billion dollars. The economy continues to be shaky, which is significantly hurting state finances. We’ve already tapped nearly all of our unreserved funds so there is very little cushion if revenues continue to fall. We need to watch revenues and spending very closely, because the state may be forced to readjust priorities.”

DiNapoli’s April Monthly Cash Report released today found the General Fund closing balance for April was $60.8 million below Financial Plan projections. General Fund receipts totaling $4.8 billion were $239.1 million below projections and disbursements of nearly $4 billion were $177.8 million below projections. Personal income taxes of $2.9 billion and business taxes of $61 million were significantly below April 2008 receipts (48.9 percent and 41.4 percent).

Other findings in the report:

  • General Fund spending of nearly $4 billion was up $138.6 million compared to last year. The increase in spending was primarily due to increased costs for education (up $220.5 million), health and the environment (up $70.5 million). These increases were offset by decreases in Medicaid spending (which was supported by new federal stimulus funding) and General State Charges. General Fund spending was $177.8 million below projections.
  • All Funds receipts through April 2009 of $9.6 billion were $69.6 million below projections and $3 billion lower than April 2008.
  • All Governmental Funds spending through April 30, 2009 of $8.2 billion was $885.8 million, or 12.1 percent, more than 2008-09 figures through April 30, 2008, primarily due to increases in education ($200.1 million or 24.4 percent),and debt service ($237.3 million or 75.2 percent). In addition, Medicaid costs increased $493.7 million, or 18 percent, primarily because of increased caseloads associated with the economy. All Funds spending was $162.4 million below projections.

The state’s finances are generally broken down by two main categories: General Fund and All Governmental Funds. The General Fund is the major operating fund of the state and accounts for all receipts that are not required by law to be deposited into another fund. All Governmental Funds includes General, Special Revenue, Debt Service and Capital Projects funds, as well as funds from the federal government. DiNapoli’s monthly cash report compares state finances against the same time period last year and the state’s current year Financial Plan.

Click here for a copy of the report.

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