Gov. Justice reports stellar revenue collections numbers for August, says incredible things continue to happen for West Virginia

9/4/2018

August collections $33.4 million above estimates, YTD revenues $65.8 ahead of estimates
CHARLESTON, WV -  Gov. Jim Justice announced today that General Revenue collections for the state continue to run significantly ahead of estimates and prior year receipts and that the state’s economy keeps moving forward and growing stronger.
 
August General Revenue Fund collections of nearly $352.3 million were $33.4 million above estimate and 14.9% above prior year receipts. The increase from prior year receipts was attributable to a $21.5 million increase in monthly Severance Tax collections, a $13.6 million monthly increase in Consumer Sales tax collections and a $12.0 million increase in monthly Personal Income Tax collections. These three revenue sources accounted for more than 100% of the $45.6 million increase in collections from the prior year and for 84% of the monthly surplus over estimates. The last time cumulative collections through August were more than 19% ahead of prior year receipts was in August 2010.
 
Year-to-date collections of nearly $665.9 million were $65.8 million above estimate and 19% ahead of prior year receipts.
 
“This is a story of just how great our state is doing,” Gov. Justice said. “Incredible things are happening. For several months now we have seen significant proof that what we are doing is working and these numbers back it up. We should be proud of ourselves in every way.
 
“It doesn’t mean we are across the finish line, it doesn’t mean we are on easy street. Lots of people out there are still hurting,” Gov. Justice added. “But the people put me in this job to move us forward, to create job opportunities and that’s what I’m doing.”
 
Gov. Justice went on to say, “The last time monthly revenues were below estimate was in March 2018 when collections fell short by $10.9 million,” Gov. Justice added. “Since then April 2018 collections were $23.7 million above estimate and 6.3% ahead of prior year receipts. May 2018 collections were $20.2 million above estimate and 6.1% below prior year receipts. June 2018 collections were $4.7 million above estimate and 9.8% below prior year receipts and July 2018 collections were $32.4 million above estimate and 24.1% ahead of prior year receipts.”
 
 
August collection details include:
 
General Revenue Fund
 
August General Revenue Fund collections of nearly $352.3 million were $33.4 million above estimate and 14.9% above prior year receipts. The increase from prior year receipts was attributable to a $21.5 million increase in monthly Severance Tax collections, a $13.6 million monthly increase in Consumer Sales tax collections and a $12.0 million increase in monthly Personal Income Tax collections. These three revenue sources accounted for more than 100% of the $45.6 million increase in collections from the prior year and for 84% of the monthly surplus over estimates.
 
Year-to-date collections of nearly $665.9 million were $65.8 million above estimate and 19% ahead of prior year receipts. The sharp rise in collections was attributable to very high rates of growth in Severance Tax, Consumer Sales Tax and Personal Income Tax collections. Year-to-date General Fund Severance Tax collections were nearly 150% ($37.6 million) ahead of last year. Year-to-date General Fund Consumer Sales Tax collections were 20.7% ($35.4 million) ahead of last year. Year-to-date Personal Income Tax collections were 11.5% ($29.3 million) ahead of last year. 
 
A summary of major components follows:
 
August Personal Income Tax collections of $139.2 million were nearly $4.2 million above estimate and 9.4% above of prior year receipts. The gain in net revenue from the prior year was due to higher than expected withholding tax receipts. Income withholding tax payments of $127.6 million were 8.8% above prior year receipts and reflect a combination of improving wage and employment growth. Cumulative withholding tax collections of $268.6 million were 11% above prior year receipts. Withholding tax collections previously grew by 9.1% during the final three months of FY2018. Data from the WorkForce WV June employment report show private sector employment growth of 1.0% over the prior year with nearly 58% of the job growth concentrated in the goods producing sectors.
 
August Consumer Sales and Use Tax collections of $119.0 million were $7.2 million above estimate and 12.9% above prior year receipts. Cumulative collections were nearly $16.1 million above estimate and 20.7% ahead of prior year receipts. Overall collection growth, including transfers to special revenue funds, was a robust 13.0% for the year-to-date. After rising at a more modest clip of roughly 2% during most of last year, total sales tax collections rose at much higher rates of 7.8% in June 13.3% in July and 12.9% in August.       
 
August General Revenue Fund Severance Tax collections of $50.1 million were $16.7 million above estimate and 75.1% ahead of prior year receipts. Year-to-date collections were nearly $30.3 million above estimate and 149.5% ahead of prior year collections. Total cumulative severance tax collections for all funds were up by nearly 71%.  The 75% gain in August followed a 66% gain in July and a 24.8% decline in the prior month of June. Recent strong growth in collections was partially attributable to growth in the value of foreign exports of coal. In addition, natural gas prices are trending a bit higher than last year with greater summer price stability this year.
 
Tobacco Products collections totaled $18.9 million in August, an amount that was more than 20% above prior year receipts. After being $2.3 million below estimate in July, August collections were $3.6 million above estimate. Cumulative collections were still 0.9% below prior year receipts.
 
August Business and Occupation Tax collections of $9.3 million were roughly $0.4 million above estimate. Cumulative collections of $19.5 million were $1.5 million above estimate and 5.2% ahead of prior year receipts.
 
Insurance Premium Tax collections of nearly $0.4 million were $0.3 million below estimate in August. Year-to-date collections of nearly $29.2 million were $0.9 million above estimate and 5.6% ahead of last year due to higher insurance premiums in a growing economy.
 
August is not a major collection month for the Corporation Net Income Tax. However, net receipts of $1.9 million were $0.1 million below estimate, but still 52.9% above prior year receipts. Cumulative collections of $5.9 million were $0.9 million below estimate, but 21.6% ahead of prior year receipts.     
 
 
State Road Fund
In August, total State Road Fund collections of $105.5 were $26.1 million below estimate and 2.4% below prior year receipts. The shortfall was largely due to an 8.4% decline in federal reimbursements. All other collections were collectively $4.3 million below the monthly estimate and just 0.8% ahead of prior year receipts due to a 23.6% drop in Motor Fuel Excise Tax collections. Motor Fuel Excise Tax collections fell short of estimate by $12.2 million in August. A significant portion of the Motor Fuel Excise Tax due on August 31stwill not be remitted by affected Taxpayers until early September. Monthly License and Registration Fee collections were $5 million above estimate and 34.3% ahead of prior year receipts. Monthly Motor Vehicle Sales Tax collections of $22.8 million were $2.3 million above estimate and 14% ahead of prior year receipts.
 
Cumulative State Road Fund collections of $252 million were $1.0 million below estimate and 7.5% ahead of prior year receipts. Discounting federal reimbursements, total collections nearly $173 million were $22.7 million above estimate and 9% ahead of prior year receipts. Cumulative Motor Fuel Excise Tax collections were $8.0 million above estimate and 14.7% ahead of last year. Cumulative License and Registration Fees were nearly $8.5 million ahead of estimate and 29.2% ahead of last year. Cumulative Motor Vehicle Sales Tax collections were nearly $6.6 million above estimate and 20.6% ahead of prior year receipts.
 
For details on other revenues, go to 
www.budget.wv.gov/reportsandcharts/revenuereports 
  

Contact Information

Butch Antolini

Contact

Office of the Governor
State Capitol, 1900 Kanawha Blvd. E
Charleston, WV 25305

Office Phone:
304.558.2000 or 1.888.438.2731

Governor's Mansion:
304.558.3588

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