Local government sales tax collections in New York state totaled $5.9 billion in the third calendar quarter of 2023 (July - September), an increase of 3.6%, or more than $205 million, compared to the same period last year, according to a report released today by State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli. This marks the second consecutive quarter of collections returning to lower pre-pandemic year-over-year growth rates.
“Year-over-year growth in local sales tax collections in the third quarter continued to moderate compared to their pandemic highs,” DiNapoli said. “Local governments should be shoring up their budgets now so they are prepared for any downturn in the economy.”
DiNapoli’s report found:
- Stable Monthly Growth: Growth for each of the three months (July, August and September) comprising the third calendar quarter of 2023 was relatively stable, ranging from 3% to 4%.
- NYC Growth Strengthens: New York City’s sales tax growth, which had been moderating since the second quarter of 2022, strengthened in the third quarter of 2023. In July-September, city collections totaled $2.5 billion, up 4.9%, or nearly $119 million, year over year. More workers are returning to the office and the number of international travelers is nearing pre-pandemic levels, although parts of the city’s economy are still recovering.
- Three Quarters of Counties See Increases: Forty-three of 57 counties had year-over-year sales tax increases during the third quarter of 2023, totaling 2.4% statewide. The counties of Allegany (17.1%), Livingston (15.6%) and Saratoga (12.1%) had the strongest growth, while Lewis County (-10.2%) experienced the steepest decline.
- Majority of Cities Perform Well: Thirteen of the 18 cities outside of New York City that impose their own sales tax instead of receiving a portion of county collections also experienced growth in the third quarter of 2023. Norwich had the strongest growth at 35.9%, while Auburn had the biggest decline at -6.5%.
- Gas Collections Slightly Up: Despite gas prices declining 9.5% in the third quarter of 2023 compared to the same period in 2022, sales tax collections on motor fuels increased by nearly 3%, year over year. Several counties participated in the state’s “gas tax holiday” in the third quarter of 2022, which reduced the taxable amount on each gallon of gasoline sold, resulting in depressed overall motor fuel collections. By January 2023, however, nearly all participating counties had reverted to their normal method of taxation.
Third Quarter Sales Tax
Second Quarter Sales Tax