Local government sales tax collections in April grew by 45.7 percent over the same month in 2020, State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli announced today. Collections totaled $1.5 billion, up $464 million from April of last year.
“The strong collections in April show that the economy is gaining steam, thanks in part to federal aid, more lifts in restrictions and a climb in the vaccination rates,” DiNapoli said. “However, local governments must monitor changing economic conditions and continue to be vigilant when it comes to their finances.”
Much of this spike in monthly statewide local sales taxes over last year reflects the extremely weak collections experienced by every region of the state in April 2020, when many businesses were closed. Even so, collections last month were quite strong: when comparing April 2021 to April 2019 (before the pandemic), they increased significantly, up 10.2 percent or $137 million.
All counties, except Oswego County, saw their year-over-year collections for April grow by a wide margin, ranging from 28.2 percent in Schuyler County to 131 percent in Schenectady County. New York City’s collections totaled $657 million, an increase of 39.6 percent or $186 million.
In the last month of each calendar quarter, the Department of Taxation and Finance reconciles quarterly distributions against what had been reported by sales tax vendors for the reporting quarter, and adjusts payments to local jurisdictions in those months upward or downward accordingly. In all other months, including April, the payments are based on estimates. The next reconciliation will be reported in mid-July and will provide a more accurate regional picture of sales tax collections during the second quarter (April-June) of 2021.
Find out how your government money is spent at Open Book New York. Track municipal spending, the state's 180,000 contracts, billions in state payments and public authority data. Visit the Reading Room for contract FOIL requests, bid protest decisions and commonly requested data.