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Accounting Bulletin GASB 84 Report Cover

Provide guidance on identifying fiduciary activities for accounting and financial reporting purposes... Updated November 2020 (Originally Issued March 2020)

Accounting for Medicaid-Related Intergovernmental Transfers - Cover Image

The purpose of this bulletin is to provide accounting guidance to counties for Medicaid-related intergovernmental transfers (IGTs).

Local Sales Tax Collections Decline by 10 Percent in 2020, With Major Shifts in Consumer Spending - Cover Image

New York State local sales tax collections declined by 10 percent (or $1.8 billion) in 2020 compared to 2019, due to the economic impact of the COVID-19 global pandemic.

Fiscal Stress Monitoring System - School Districts: School Year 2019-20 Results; 2020-21 Risks Report Cover

This snapshot highlights the FSMS results for school districts that reported for school fiscal year (SY) 2019-20, which ended on June 30, 2020, which included the period of the statewide mandatory school shutdown from March 18 through....

Title Description Issued Topic
Statewide Local Sales Tax Collections in January Down 5.9 Percent

Local government sales tax collections declined by 5.9 percent, or $95 million, in January compared to the same month in 2020. The decline is less steep than the 8.4 percent drop in December and not nearly as significant as the double-digit declines in the earlier months of the pandemic (April-June). All but one region – Central New York – in the state experienced a decrease in cash collections; New York City had a 6 percent, or $45 million, decline compared to January 2020. | Regional Table [.xlsx]

Research Report
Local Sales Tax Collections Decline by 10 Percent in 2020, With Major Shifts in Consumer Spending

New York State local sales tax collections declined by 10 percent (or $1.8 billion) in 2020 compared to 2019, due to the economic impact of the COVID-19 global pandemic. New York City, which was hit earliest and hardest by the pandemic, saw its collections decline by 18.7 percent in 2020, while counties outside the City saw an average drop of only -0.9 percent. The pandemic also caused a dramatic shift in consumer spending during the spring and summer months. One change was a significant increase in online purchases. Meanwhile, the state’s recent ability to tax sales made by smaller out-of-state sellers to New York residents – referred to as “marketplace and nexus vendors” – bolstered local sales tax collections. | Regional Table [.xlsx]

Research Report
Statewide November Local Sales Tax Collections Down 7.1 Percent

Local government sales tax collections declined by 7.1 percent, or $102 million, in November compared to the same month in 2019. The decline is steeper than in October, but not as bad as the double-digit declines in the earlier months (April-June) of the pandemic. All but five counties saw declines in overall collections in November, and New York City had a 6.5 percent, or $45 million, decline. | Regional Table [.xlsx]

Research Report
Statewide Local Sales Tax Collections Decline 5.2 Percent in October

Local government sales tax revenue declined by 5.2 percent, or $74.4 million, in October compared to the same month in 2019. This drop was less severe than previous declines since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly in the spring when collections fell by double-digits. New York City had a 5.3 percent, or $34.5 million, decline in revenue, and all but eight counties in the state saw drops in collections for October as well. | Regional Table [.xlsx]

Research Report
Third Quarter 2020 Local Sales Tax Collections Down 9.5 Percent; New York City’s Decline Offsets Uptick in the Rest of State

Statewide local sales tax collections in the third quarter of 2020 declined by 9.5 percent, or $452 million, over the same quarter in 2019. This decrease, while alarming in a typical year, was still a marked improvement from the 27.1 percent drop in the second quarter, which reflected the peak of the economic impact to date from the COVID-19 pandemic. New York City’s steep decline of nearly 22 percent in sales tax revenue was the main driver behind the overall drop in local government collections in the third quarter. Nearly every other region of the state saw at least some increase over the third quarter of 2019, although these increases were not as strong as in the pre-COVID first quarter. | Regional Table [.xlsx]

Research Report
Understanding Local Government Sales Tax in New York State - 2020 Update

New York State imposes a "general sales tax" at a single rate on most goods and some services. Counties and cities can impose their own local sales tax in addition to the State rate. Local sales tax revenue is a major part of local government finances, amounting to $16.9 billion in 2019. This report is an update to the Office of the State Comptroller’s March 2015 publication on local government sales taxes in New York State.

Research Report
Local Sales Tax Collections Down 7.8 Percent in August

Local government sales tax revenue declined by 7.8 percent, or $111 million, in August compared to the same month last year. This drop in revenue is similar to the overall decline in July of 8.2 percent, though much less extreme than the early months of the pandemic when sales tax collections plummeted by double digits. All but two counties in the state experienced decreases in overall collections for August, and New York City’s collections dropped by 7.1 percent. | Regional Table [.xlsx]

Research Report
Local Sales Tax Collections Drop 8.2 Percent in July

Sales tax collections for local governments in July totaled $1.3 billion, or $116 million less than in July 2019. Although the month’s collections are down compared with last year, the decline is less steep than at any time since March, when the COVID-19 pandemic began to affect sales tax collections. Nearly every county in every region of the state saw decreases, and New York City experienced a 7.3 percent decline. | Regional Table [.xlsx]

Research Report
Second Quarter Local Sales Tax Collections Down Significantly; June Collections Improve for Most Regions

Sales tax revenue for local governments in the second quarter of 2020 totaled $3.3 billion, a decline of $1.2 billion compared to the same period last year. The second quarter drop came after a 4.6 percent increase in first quarter collections, the strength of which was partly due to better collection of taxes on internet sales from small, out-of-state merchants. However, within the second quarter, collections for the month of June showed some improvement in most regions with many upstate counties experiencing year-over-year growth. | Monthly and Quarterly Local Sales Tax Collections by Region [.xlsx]

Research Report
Local Sales Tax Collection Drops Over 32 Percent in May

Sales tax revenue for local governments in May totaled $918 million, or $437 million less than 2019. The sharp decline in revenues was widespread around the state, ranging from a drop of 19.5 percent in Westchester County to a 41.5 percent decline in Tioga County. Nearly every county in every region of the state saw a large drop in overall collections. New York City experienced a 31.9 percent decline, amounting to $196 million in lost revenues for a single month.

Research Report
Local Sales Tax Collections Declined 24.4 Percent in April, after COVID-19 Shutdown

Plummeting sales tax collections were widespread, leaving counties, cities and some other local governments short by about $327 million compared to last year. Although the first quarter of 2020 was relatively strong, March sales tax collections had already begun to show the impact of the COVID-19 shutdown–a decrease of 3.7 percent statewide with the largest declines downstate. The April figures show shrinking revenues for local governments throughout the state.

Research Report
Local Sales Tax Growth Strong in First Quarter of 2020 Prior to Global Pandemic

New York State local sales tax collections in the first quarter (January-March) of 2020 totaled $4.4 billion. This was an increase of 4.6 percent over the same period last year, mostly reflecting sales made before the statewide implementation of business and office closures and social distancing policies in reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Research Report
Growth in Local Sales Tax Collections Remains Strong in 2019 Due to Robust Second Half

Local sales tax collections in New York State totaled $18.3 billion in 2019 for a year-over-year increase of 4.7 percent. While this was slower than the 5.3 percent annual growth for 2018, it exceeded growth in all other years since 2013. The economic climate in 2019 was generally positive for sales tax growth. The statewide labor market remained firm throughout the year, with continued employment and wage growth. Consumer spending also held up well throughout the year, despite slightly reduced consumer confidence over prior years.

Research Report
Account Code for Aid and Incentives for Municipalities (AIM) -Related Payments

The purpose of this bulletin is to provide guidance related to accounting for Aid and Incentives for Municipalities (AIM)-Related Payments. These payments are a result of a recent amendment to the New York State Tax Law, which requires a portion of county-imposed sales tax revenues to be withheld and distributed by the State Comptroller to certain towns and villages in accordance with new Tax Law Section 1261.
Updated January 2020 (Originally Issued December 2019)

Accounting
Local Sales Tax Collections Growth Improves in Third Quarter of 2019

Local sales tax collections in New York State totaled $4.8 billion in the third quarter of 2019, an increase of 6.3 percent over the third quarter of 2018. This growth was stronger than in either of the first two quarters of the year.

Research Report
Growth in Local Sales Tax Collections Slows in the First Half of 2019

Local sales tax collections for the first half of 2019 totaled $8.8 billion in New York State. Collections grew by 3.4 percent and 3.2 percent in the first and second quarters, respectively, over the same periods in 2018. This moderate pace is closer to those seen in most of 2017 than to the stronger early quarters of 2018.

Research Report
Sales Tax Growth Strengthens for a Third Year: 2018 Collections Up 5.3 Percent

Local sales tax collections in New York State were $17.5 billion in 2018, a 5.3 percent increase over the previous calendar year and the third consecutive year that growth in collections improved. Certain economic factors may be contributing to this improvement--more than 62,000 additional New York residents were employed in 2018, total wages for the first two quarters increased by nearly 5.7 percent compared to the same period in the prior year, consumer confidence has remained high and consumer spending has been mostly steady throughout the year.

Research Report
First Half of 2018: Highest Growth in Local Sales Tax Collections in Almost Eight Years

Local sales tax collections in New York State for the first half of 2018 were $8.5 billion, a 6.0 percent increase over the same period last year. This was the highest half-year increase since 2010, growing in every region of the State compared to the first half of 2017. Factors that may have influenced this include the lowest unemployment rate in over a decade, steady wage growth in the first half of 2018 and high consumer confidence.

Research Report
Local Sales Tax Growth in 2017 Highest in Four Years

Local sales tax collections for calendar year 2017 totaled $16.6 billion, an increase of $620 million, or 3.9 percent, from the previous year. This marks the highest year-over-year growth since 2013. 

Research Report
First Half of 2017: Local Sales Tax Growth Ticks Up Statewide

For the first half of calendar year 2017, local sales tax collections were $8.0 billion, a 3.3 percent increase over the same period last year. This is a slight improvement over the last several half-year periods. Economic factors supporting these results include continued low unemployment and high consumer confidence. Sales taxes were also boosted by growth in collections from sales of motor fuels.

Research Report
2016 Local Sales Tax Collections

While total local sales tax collections in New York State grew by only 0.7 percent in 2016, the modest increase was largely due to a multiyear correction that inflated New York City's 2015 collections. After adjusting for this correction, total local growth was about $357 million over the prior year, or about 2.3 percent.

Research Report
Local Sales Tax Collections Improve in 2015

Total local sales tax collections in New York State grew by $552 million, or 3.6 percent, from 2014 to 2015 This was stronger than the 3.0 percent increase in the prior year. New York City sales tax collections grew by 7.3 percent, or $487 million, about half of which was due to an adjustment for incorrect payments in previous years. Excluding New York City, growth in local sales tax collections was 0.7 percent, with 30 of 57 counties outside of New York City having declines in their 2015 sales tax collections.

Research Report
Local Sales Tax Collection Growth Slows Significantly in First Half of 2015

In the first half of 2015, total local sales tax collections in New York State grew by only about half of the 3.0 percent growth seen in all of 2014 and nearly two thirds less than the 4.2 percent average annual growth experienced over the previous 15 years. Sales tax revenue declined in half of the regions in the State, with the sharpest decline being in the North Country, which saw a 2.5 percent drop. | [read county-by-county data - pdf]

Research Report
Local Government Sales Taxes in New York State: 2015 Update

The sales tax generates 8 percent of all local government revenues in New York State and 27 percent of county revenues. This report examines the general sales and use tax imposed for local governments in the State. It covers the sales tax rates in counties and cities, and trends in sales tax revenues for local governments. It also includes an up-to-date county-level summary of sales tax sharing arrangements and discusses recent activity in the taxation of Internet sales.

Research Report
Local Sales Tax Collection Growth Slows to 3 Percent in 2014; Slowest Growth Since 2009

Local sales tax growth was slower in 2014 than in any year since the 2008-2009 recession, in part due to slow growth in the first quarter of the year. Long Island collections declined, some upstate counties had strong growth due to increased sales tax rates, and New York City's growth was relatively strong. | [read county-by-county data - pdf]

Research Report
Growth in Local Sales Tax Collections Slows to 2.4 Percent in First Half of 2014; Long Island and Southern Tier Collections Decline

Although total local sales tax collections have grown each quarter since the end of the 2008-2009 recession, the rate of this growth has shown a downward overall trend. [read county-by-city data - pdf]

Research Report
Local Sales Tax Collections Increase by 5.2 Percent in 2013; New York City and Long Island Have Strongest Growth

Sales tax is a major revenue source for New York City and the 57 counties. The strongest growth for 2013 was in the Long Island region Some of the rapid sales tax growth seen there and in New York City was due to the rebuilding efforts after Hurricane Sandy.

Research Report
Local Sales Tax Collections Up 5.7 Percent in First Half of 2013; Growth Concentrated Downstate

Local Sales Tax Collections Up 5.7 Percent in First Half of 2013; Growth Concentrated Downstate

Research Report
Local Sales Tax Collections Increase by 3.3 Percent in 2012 Signaling Slower Economic Growth in New York

Sluggish growth in sales tax revenues adds additional pressure to already strained county budgets and to the budgets of other local governments that receive sales tax revenues through sharing agreements. | [read county-by-county data - pdf]

Research Report
Sales Tax Collections Continue to Rebound; Growth Rate Slows

Local sales tax collections grew by $650 million, or 5 percent, from 2010 to 2011, compared to a growth rate of 9.9 percent between 2009 and 2010. However, nearly a third of the 2010 growth was attributable to a sales tax rate increase in New York City. Without this, growth would have been about 7 percent. | [read county-by-county report - pdf]

Research Report
Sales Tax Collections Improve in 2010; County Collections Still Shy of 2008

Local sales tax collections grew by 9.9 percent in 2010 compared to 2009, when sales tax collections declined by 6.0 percent. However, nearly a third of this growth was due to a sales tax rate increase in New York City.

Research Report
Sales Tax Collections Continue to Rebound: Uneven Recovery Across New York

Local sales tax collections, including New York City’s, increased by 10.5 percent during the first three quarters of 2010, compared to a 9.0 percent decline in the same period the year before. However, over a third of this growth is due to sales tax rate increases and the extension of the sales tax to additional items in New York City and Nassau County. Adjusting for these tax increases, the growth in sales tax collections to date in 2010 has been about 6 percent.

Research Report
Signs of Recovery? Stabilizing Economy, Tax Increases Help Local Sales Tax Collections

Local sales tax collections, including New York City, increased by 10.6 percent during the first half of 2010 compared to the same period the year before. About half of this growth is due to sales tax rate increases and the extension of the sales tax to additional items.

Research Report
Local Government Sales Taxes: 2010 Update

The report is an update to a report on the sales tax first issued in 2006, "Local Government Sales Taxes in New York State." The report highlights new issues related to this important revenue source, including the potential impact of the upcoming 2010 Decennial Census on the share of tax revenues flowing to individual governments. 

Research Report
New York’s Dairy Industry in Crisis

New York’s dairy farms are a vital part of the upstate economy. Dairy industry losses in local communities have a ripple effect throughout their economies, negatively impacting local businesses that provide supplies or services to dairy farms, and the property and sales tax base.

Research Report
County Sales Tax: 2009 Collections and Implications for 2010

County sales tax collections (not including New York City) declined by 5.9 percent in 2009 compared to 2008. Fifty-three of 57 counties had sales tax declines. | [view County Sales Tax Collections 2007-2009 - Including New York City - pdf]

Research Report
“Cash for Clunkers” Helps, but New York Local Sales Tax Collections Still Declining

Overall, county sales tax collections (excluding New York City) continued to fall during the third quarter of 2009 (July-September), declining by 7.9 percent, although collections at New York’s automobile dealerships actually increased compared to the same quarter in 2008, suggesting that the Car Allowance Rebate System (also called “Cash for Clunkers”) moderated the decline. | [County Sales Tax Distributions - pdf]

Research Report
Sales Tax Declines Through July 2009

Local sales tax collections for all of New York State, including New York City, declined by 8.9 percent, or $640 million, over the first seven months of 2009 compared to the same period the year before.

Research Report
New York State County Sales Tax Collections by Region

Sales taxes are an important source of revenue for New York State's local governments. This revenue stream has helped local governments cope with the rising cost of providing services and mitigate property tax increases. Sales tax revenues now exceed the real property tax as the largest revenue source for counties.

Research Report
Decision 2007: Counties and the Medicaid Choice

Under legislation passed in 2005, which established a cap on local Medicaid costs, counties needed to decide by September 2007 to either keep the Medicaid cap or exchange a percentage of their sales tax revenues.

Research Report
Accounting and Budgeting for Shared Sales Tax Revenues

This bulletin highlights accounting and budgeting changes for counties who share their own sales tax revenues with other local governments within their boundaries. These changes are necessitated by the recent Statements from the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB).

Accounting
County Medicaid Costs

Across the State, growing Medicaid costs continue to place significant pressure on local fiscal conditions. With most counties already seeking or receiving State legislative approval to increase their sales tax rates to 4 percent or more, and some dangerously close to exhausting their property tax margins, counties are being challenged to effectively deal with rising Medicaid costs.

Research Report