Senator Pat Browne E-Newsletter

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October Revenue Collections Trick or Treat?

General Fund revenue collections for the month of October exceeded the estimate by $28.3 million.  General Fund tax revenues were $16.9 million higher than the monthly estimate.  Non-tax revenue was $11.4 million above the estimate. General Fund revenue collections for the first four months of the fiscal year are $238 million ahead of estimate.

October 2018 General Fund Revenue vs. Monthly Estimate:

  • General Fund revenue collections of $2.47 billion were above the monthly estimate by $28.3 million, or 1.2%.
  • General Fund tax revenues were above estimate by $16.9 million, or 0.7%.
  • Corporation taxes were $10.5 million, or 10.4%, above the estimate.
  • Sales and use tax collections beat the estimate by $26.8 million, or 2.9%, for the month.
  • Personal income tax collections were below estimate by $5.4 million, or 0.5%.
  • Non-tax revenues exceeded the estimate by $11.4 million, or 62.4%.

 Fiscal Year 2018-19 vs. the Official Revenue Estimate To-Date:

  • Total General Fund revenues are $238 million, or 2.4%, higher than the Official Revenue Estimate through the month of October.
  • General Fund tax revenue is $218.1 million, or 2.2%, above estimate.
  • Corporation taxes are $179.8 million, or 23.6%, above the estimate.
  • Sales and use taxes are $94.5 million, or 2.6%, above the estimate.
    • General SUT collections are $60.8 million, or 1.9%, above estimate.
    • SUT collections on motor vehicle sales are $33.7 million, or 6.9%, higher than the estimate.
  • Personal income tax collections are short of the estimate by $40.7 million, or 1%.
    • Withheld PIT is $24.5 million, or 0.7%, below the estimate.
    • Non-withheld PIT (annual & estimated payments) is $16.2 million, or 2.3%, short of estimate.
  • Non-tax revenues are $19.9 million, or 23.7%, higher than the estimate.

Fiscal Year 2018-19 vs. Fiscal Year 2017-18:

  • Total General Fund revenues through October are $919.8 million, or 10.1%, higher than last year at this time.
  • General Fund tax revenue is $893.2 million, or 9.9%, higher than last year (includes an extra PIT withholding date).
  • Corporation taxes are $231.9 million, or 32.7%, higher.
  • Sales and use tax collections are $309.5 million, or 8.9%, higher than last year through October.
  • Personal income tax collections exceed last year’s collections by $333.9 million, or 8.9% (FY 2018-19 includes 18 large collection days through October vs. only 17 such days in FY 2017-18).
  • Non-tax revenues are $26.6 million, or 34.3%, more than last fiscal year through October.

Motor License Fund:

  • Motor License Fund revenues are below the estimate by $35.9 million, or 3.8%, through October.
  • Motor License Fund revenues are $81.5 million, or 8.2%, less than last fiscal year at this time.

Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program Deadline Extended 

The deadline for older Pennsylvanians and residents with disabilities to apply for rebates on property taxes and rent paid in 2017 has been extended from June 30 to December 31, 2018.  The rebate program benefits eligible Pennsylvanians age 65 and older; widows and widowers age 50 and older; and people with disabilities age 18 and older.  The income limit is $35,000 per year for homeowners and $15,000 annually for renters.  One-half of    Social Security income is excluded from these amounts.

For more information or to request an application, please visit the Department of Revenue’s website at: 

Property Tax Rent Rebate Program Information

Jackpots Boost Lottery Fund

A historic $1.5 billion Mega Millions jackpot coupled with a $750 million Powerball jackpot generated a large infusion of revenue to the Commonwealth’s Lottery Fund in recent weeks.  The Lottery Fund supports a variety of programs for aging Pennsylvanians, such as property tax and rent relief and pharmaceutical assistance.  

Pennsylvania Lottery revenues have averaged $30 million a week this year but can increase significantly when multi-state jackpots rise, as evidenced by recent weekly revenues of $87 million and $63 million.  While the additional revenue is good news for the Lottery, it will not necessarily result in a surplus since large jackpots are assumed to occur each year and are factored in to the Lottery’s revenue projections.

Pennsylvania Dairy Investment Program Aims to Help Industry 

In recent years, Pennsylvania’s dairy industry has been impacted by low milk prices resulting from a stockpile of milk on the global market and a decrease in consumption of fluid milk.  To give the industry a boost, in June the General Assembly established the Pennsylvania Dairy Investment Program (PDIP) as part of House Bill 1929 (Act 42 of 2018) to help Pennsylvania dairy producers diversify their businesses and strengthen operations to better compete in an increasingly competitive global marketplace. 

The program is administered jointly by the Department of Community and Economic Development and the Department of Agriculture under the direction of the Commonwealth Financing Authority and will make $5 million in grant funding available beginning this fall.  Program grants require a 15% cash match from the recipient.  Specifically, projects eligible for grant funding include:

  • Researching new technologies, products and best practices;
  • Marketing to new domestic and international markets;
  • Exploring new business opportunities to diversify operations and revenue streams;
  • Transitioning to organic production methods; or
  • Incorporating or expanding value-added dairy production, such as cheese, butter, yogurt or ice cream products.

The program is now open for applications after guidelines were recently approved by the Commonwealth Financing    Authority (CFA).  The grant application and guidelines can be found at the following website:

https://dced.pa.gov/programs/pennsylvania-dairy-investment-program-pdip/.

Pennsylvania ranks 7th nationally in total milk production and has the 2nd largest number of dairy farms in the country with approximately 6,500 farms. Additionally, a recent economic impact analysis conducted by the International Dairy Foods Association estimates that the state’s dairy industry directly generates $8.9 billion in revenue annually and employs 45,029 Pennsylvanians. 

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