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(TRENTON) - The Department of the Treasury today reported that August revenue collections are on target two months into the new fiscal year.
August collections for the major taxes totaled $2.075 billion, up $10.2 million, or 0.5 percent, compared to last August. Year-to-date, total collections of $2.514 billion are up $89.2 million, or 3.7 percent above the same two months last year.
Treasury noted that the first two months of the fiscal year are not considered a bellwether, as there are no significant due dates for any of the major taxes and most of the revenue collected in July is attributed to the previous fiscal year.
August collections for the Gross Income Tax (GIT), which is dedicated to the Property Tax Relief Fund, totaled $853.9 million, down $56.5 million, or 6.2 percent below last August. However, this decline was due to a timing shift of one weekly employer withholding payment from August to July compared to last year. Year-to-date, withholding receipts, which make up the bulk of GIT collections, are up 5.7 percent, and the combined July and August collections for the GIT are up 1.3 percent.
The Sales and Use Tax, the largest General Fund revenue source, was up 8.1 percent in August, the first month of collections for this revenue in FY 2020 due to a one-month payment lag.
The Corporation Business Tax (CBT), the second largest General Fund revenue, brought in $38.6 million in August, down 13.5 percent from the same month last year. Year-to-date through August, CBT collections of $210.2 million are up $23.4 million, or 12.5 percent over last year. While these collections are positive, the first two months of the fiscal year are relatively small for the CBT and not a reliable trend indicator. The first important month will be September, given that significant quarterly estimated payments are due, which typically generates three to four times the CBT revenue of July and August combined. Treasury is forecasting a 17.5 percent decline in CBT revenues in FY 2020 as certain one-time payments received last fall and winter are not expected to recur.