Research Reports

Municipalities: Fiscal Year 2019 Results; Fiscal Year 2020 Risks

This snapshot highlights the results for counties, cities, towns and villages that reported for local fiscal years ending (FYE) 2019. These scores, therefore, provide a baseline for local government fiscal preparedness in the period just prior to the pandemic. To provide additional context for these results, this snapshot also examines some of the biggest local government fiscal stress risk factors arising from the COVID-19 crisis.

First Quarter 2022 Local Sales Tax Collections Up 21 Percent

Local government sales tax collections totaled nearly $5.2 billion in the first quarter of 2022, an increase of 21.1 percent, or $901 million, compared to the same quarter the previous year. This growth was at least partially driven by inflation, which hit a 40-year-high in March, most notably for gasoline, new and used cars, and household energy costs. Almost every county outside of New York City experienced double-digit growth in the first quarter.

Aid and Incentives for Municipalities: New York State's Local Revenue Sharing Program

The Aid and Incentives for Municipalities (AIM) program, the State’s unrestricted aid program for cities, towns and villages, has remained flat or declined over the last decade.  Also called revenue sharing, this aid to local governments has declined by 24% since 2011, when the state’s real property tax cap was enacted. This aid is important for municipalities, since it can be used for any governmental purpose, and it is particularly vital to many cities.

2021 Local Sales Taxes Grew by Over 19 Percent; Exceeded Pre-Pandemic Levels

New York State local government sales tax collections totaled $19.6 billion in 2021, an increase of 19.1 percent, or $3.1 billion, compared to the previous year. This was the highest annual jump on record after a historic low in 2020 when local sales tax collections declined by 10 percent. The report examines the many factors that drove sales tax growth in 2021, including inflation, along with the difference in sales tax recovery between New York City and the rest of the State.

Locally Owned Roads by the Numbers

Local governments across the state own 85 percent of all roads, from city and village streets to town roads and county highways. In fiscal year 2020, local governments, excluding New York City, spent $2 billion on road maintenance, repairs and upgrades, a decline of 7 percent since 2010. This report looks at local road spending, State and federal road aid, and the need for a comprehensive assessment of road conditions, maintenance needs and associated costs.

Fiscal Stress Monitoring System - School Districts: Fiscal Year 2020-21 Results

This snapshot highlights the FSMS results for school districts that reported for school fiscal year (SY) 2020-21, which ended on June 30, 2021. Fewer school districts were scored in fiscal stress in this year, but the COViD-19 pandemic and the local, State and federal responses to it had a negative impact on district operations.

Local Sales Tax Collections Up More Than 17 Percent in November

Statewide local sales tax collections grew by 17.5% in November compared to the same month in 2020. Overall, local collections totaled almost $1.6 billion, up $235 million from November of last year. Collections for the month were also notably robust when compared to pre-pandemic levels, up 9.2% (or $133 million) from November of 2019. New York City’s collections totaled $696 million, an increase of 12.6% – or nearly $78 million – when compared to November of 2020. Nearly every county experienced significant year-over-year growth in collections for November.

Local Sales Tax Collections In October Up Nearly 13 Percent

Statewide local government sales tax collections in October totaled more than $1.5 billion, an increase of 12.9 percent (or $175 million) compared to the same month in 2020. This growth continued the trend of monthly collections since April exceeding 2020 results. Strong local sales tax performance in October reflects weakened collections during the same month in 2020, when many parts of the state were still adversely impacted by the pandemic.

Third Quarter 2021 Local Sales Taxes Up 20 Percent; New York City Collections Near 2019 Pre-Pandemic Levels

Local government sales tax collections totaled nearly $5.2 billion in the third quarter of 2021, up $861 million (20 percent) compared to the same period last year. Every region in the State, including New York City, experienced robust growth in sales tax revenue. When compared to pre-pandemic levels, statewide local collections grew by 8.6 percent ($409 million) this past quarter over the same period in 2019.