While August tends to be one of the fiscal year’s smaller months for revenue collections, General Fund receipts last month show Pennsylvania’s budget is essentially on track two months into 2013-14.
August General Fund revenue collections fell $1.9 million, or 0.1%, short of the monthly estimates. For July and August, revenues were $2.2 million, or 0.1%, below estimates, while tax collections alone exceeded fiscal-year-to-date estimates by $11 million, or 0.3%. These differences are quite small compared to the overall revenue targets.
Unlike in 2012-13, sales tax collections have been running ahead of estimate so far in 2013-14. They currently exceed year-to-date estimates by $22 million, or 1.4%. Very modest shortfalls in other taxes, including personal income, corporate, and inheritance taxes, and a $14 million shortfall in non-tax collections offset the sales tax surplus.
Compared to collections through August 2012, tax revenue from July and August 2013 has grown by $69 million, or 1.9%, while total General Fund collections have grown by $42 million, or 1.2%. To meet estimates for all of 2013-14, General Fund collections must grow by a total of $469 million, or 1.6% from 2012-13 levels.
September typically has more of an impact on General Fund collections with quarterly corporate and personal income tax payments due for many taxpayers. We will also keep tabs on whether or not sales tax collections continue to exceed estimates.