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NEWS from the Office of the New York State Comptroller
Contact: Press Office 518-474-4015

DiNapoli: February Local Sales Tax Collections Down 4.2 Percent; Year Over Year Decline Narrows

Collections Declined $2.2 Billion in the 12 Months Since the Start of the Pandemic

March 16, 2021

Overall sales tax collections for local governments declined by 4.2 percent in February compared to the same month in 2020, State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli announced today. Collections totaled nearly $1.3 billion, down $55 million from February of last year. Collections are down $2.2 billion, or 12 percent, for the past 12 months (March 2020 – February 2021), compared to the same 12 months ending February 2020.

Revenues continued to shrink, but the decline last month was less steep than in January (5.9 percent) and December (8.4 percent), and the double-digit declines during the earlier months of the pandemic.

“The recent passage of the American Rescue Plan will provide much needed aid to our localities,” DiNapoli said. “The pandemic has taken a toll on statewide sales tax collections during the past year. New York’s local governments continue to suffer financially, but the collections losses are starting to slow as more vaccinations are being administered and businesses are slowly reopening.”

All regions in the state experienced sales tax collection declines for February, ranging from 0.1 percent in the Mohawk Valley to 9.8 percent in the Finger Lakes. New York City’s collections decreased by 4.5 percent, down $27 million compared to February 2020.

Statewide Local Sales Tax Collections - Monthly Year-Over-Year Change, February 2020 to February 2021

The New York State Department of Taxation and Finance reconciles sales tax collections at the end of each calendar quarter to reflect reported sales activity by location. The next reconciliation will be reported in mid-April, and will provide a more accurate regional picture of sales tax collections during the first quarter (January – March) of 2021.

Monthly Local Sales Tax Collections by Region (for detailed monthly breakdown)

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