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NJ Gets Revenue Bump to Close Out FY ’13 [AUDIO]

An uptick in hiring and summer gains on Wall Street combined to help New Jersey close out the Fiscal Year (FY) that ended June 30 on a positive note.

Overall, tax collections for last month were above last year’s figures and the state set an all-time monthly record in one very important category.

“In June we collected nearly $1.1 billion in income tax which actually was a billion dollars or so below our target, but still it was a record for the month of June,” says Dr. Charles Steindel, the State Treasury Department’s chief economist. “This is the sixth time in this fiscal year that we’ve set a record for the income tax which is pretty remarkable.”

Treasury’s latest revenue report reveals, the State’s fiscal year 2013 revenue collections through June totaled $25.6 billion, which is almost $1.6 billion, or 6.6 percent, more than in fiscal year 2012, and $143 million ahead of revised projections.

For New Jersey 16 major revenue sources, total collections in June were 1.7 percent ahead of projections. Income, sales and corporate business taxes as a group beat their targets by 7.8 percent.

“We’re continuing to see real strength in our income and sales tax collections,” says State Treasurer Andrew Sidamon-Eristoff. “The positive trend for these revenue sources tells us that conditions in the state’s overall economy are improving month by month.”

The monthly performance of the income tax has consistently been an area of strength in the overall revenue picture, according to Steindel.

Not all of the news is good. Casino revenues continue to lag far below projections. In fact, casino tax collections were almost 34.7-percent short year-over-year for the month of June.

A June revenue snapshot prepared by the non-partisan Office of Legislative Services (OLS) says through the end of June, the 14 major tax revenues tracked monthly by OLS ran 6.6% ahead of the same period last year, less than the 7.2% growth rate necessary to hit the Executive’s revised year-end targets. Most revenues trailed the target growth rates, with the major exception being the gross income tax, which continued to out-pace its target growth rate.

Then OLS report also says if the June percentage growth shortfall persists, final overall major tax revenue collections will miss the FY 2013 Executive targets by about $150 million.

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