Yates County leads New York State in the year-over-year increase of third quarter sales tax revenue with a 9% gain, bringing the year-to-date revenues to $11.1 million, just shy of the $12.2 million anticipated in the 2019 budget.

Acting Administrator Nonie Flynn says the county’s pace is pointing toward total revenues that will eclipse the target for this year’s budget.

“If we stay flat with last year (2018) for the last five collections, we will gross over $13.5 million, however, the Aid to Municipalities payment for the towns will be taken out in December, making the projection more like $13.3 million,” she explains.

Seneca County came in with 8.3% increase for the third quarter, while Ontario had a 3.3%, Schuyler had a 3.0%, and Steuben had a 0.6% increase.

Third quarter local sales tax collections in New York state totaled $4.8 billion, an increase of 6.3 percent over the same period last year, according to New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli.

“Local sales tax collections growth increased between July and September, making it the strongest quarter of 2019,” DiNapoli said. “Additional internet sales tax revenue may be a contributing factor, along with the continued rise in consumer spending and wages.”

Overall, year-to-date collections since January totaled $13.5 billion, an increase of 4.3 percent over last year.

Year-to-date sales tax collections grew in 51 of 57 counties, a marked improvement over the growth through June when 15 counties saw declines. 

A few counties had year-to-date declines, but in a number of those cases, including those in Delaware (-4.3 percent), Hamilton (-1.9 percent) and Fulton (-3 percent) counties, these were at least partially due to corrections made by the state Department of Taxation and Finance to collection figures rather than an actual decline in taxable sales activity.

Regionally, the strongest growth was downstate with the Mid-Hudson region (5.3 percent) and New York City (5 percent) leading the way. Upstate, only the Capital District had a growth rate that matched the statewide average of 4.3 percent while the Finger Lakes and Western New York slipped below the statewide average at 3.4% and the Southern Tier settled at 3.0% growth. The lowest regional growth was registered by Central New York at 1.6%.

Most of the state’s 61 cities outside of the five boroughs of New York City receive a share of what their respective counties collect, while 17 impose their own general sales tax, of which 14 experienced growth in year-to-date collections.

The report noted that in June 2019, a new requirement that internet marketplace providers collect and remit New York state and local sales taxes on behalf of their out-of-state vendors took effect.

The full report can be found at www.osc.state.ny.us/localgov/pubs/research/local-sales-tax-collections-third-quarter-2019.pdf