State Tax Revenues Continue to Rebound, Growing for Third Straight Quarter
Preliminary data from Rockefeller Institute show a 3.9 percent rise in overall tax collections
Albany, N.Y. — State tax revenues rose for a third consecutive quarter, continuing the reversal of a downward trend that has devastated state budgets, according to preliminary data in a new report from the Rockefeller Institute of Government.
Despite the improved collections in July-September 2010, however, revenues remain significantly below peak levels and are still weak in a number of states, the report shows.
Tax collections increased by 3.9 percent in the third quarter of 2010, compared to the same period a year earlier, based on data from 48 states. Of states reporting, 42 showed gains in overall tax revenues. Collections improved for the two largest revenue sources — personal income and sales taxes — while corporate income tax revenues declined slightly.
The growth in overall collections is partly driven by new tax laws in several states, but is also due to a slowly recovering economy, according to report authors Lucy Dadayan and Donald Boyd. Yet they cautioned that difficult times for states’ fiscal conditions have not ended.
“The state tax revenue picture in the first three quarters of calendar year 2010 represented significant improvement from the collapse of the preceding quarters,” they write. “Still, the immediate outlook is for revenue collections significantly below prerecession levels, and growing spending pressures. The overall picture remains: States will face continued, significant budget challenges in fiscal 2011 and beyond.”
The Institute will issue a more detailed report of state revenues for the third quarter of 2010 once complete data from the Census Bureau become available.
For a full copy of the report, visit www.rockinst.org.