Senator Pat Browne E-Newsletter

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February Revenue Collections Solid

General Fund revenue collections for February of $2.43 billion were $155.7 million above estimate for the month.  Gross receipts tax (GRT), which is generally due in March, was over the estimate by $22.7 million in February.  There is a possibility that the monthly GRT surplus is from revenues that are included in the March       estimate; therefore, this timing difference may result in lower revenues than would otherwise be received later this month.

General Fund tax revenue was $148.4 million above estimate, and non-tax revenue was $7.3 million higher than the estimate.  General Fund revenue collections for the fiscal year-to-date are $2 billion ahead of estimate.  The Governor’s FY 2022-23 Executive Budget projects that FY 2021-22 General Fund revenue collections will exceed the Official Revenue Estimate by $2.42 billion at fiscal year’s end.

February 2022 General Fund Revenue vs. Monthly Estimate:

  • General Fund revenue collections of $2.43 billion were above the monthly estimate by $155.7 million, or 6.8%.
  • General Fund tax revenues were above the estimate by $148.4 million, or 6.5%.
  • Corporation taxes were $24.6 million, or 22%, above the estimate, mostly resulting from earlier than expected GRT payments.
  • Sales and use tax collections (SUT) beat the estimate by $55.8 million, or 6.3%, for the month.
  • Personal income tax (PIT) collections were above the estimate by $40.8 million, or 4.1%.
  • Inheritance tax revenues exceeded the estimate by $14.5 million, or 14.2%.
  • Realty transfer tax collections were $18.8 million, or 47.5%, above estimate.
  • Non-tax revenues exceeded the estimate by $7.4 million, or 64.2%.

Fiscal Year 2021-22 vs. the Official Revenue Estimate To-Date:

  • Total General Fund revenues are $2 billion, or 7.5%, higher than the Official Revenue Estimate through the month of February.
  • General Fund tax revenue is $1.92 billion, or 8.5%, above estimate.
  • Corporation taxes are $622.7 million, or 28.6%, higher than the estimate.
  • Sales and use taxes are $559.6 million, or 6.5%, above estimate.
    • General SUT collections are $540.6 million, or 7.3%, above estimate.
    • SUT collections on motor vehicle sales are $19 million, or 1.7%, higher than the
  • Personal income tax collections are ahead of estimate by $528.9 million, or 5.8%. 
    • Withheld PIT is $226 million, or 3%, above the estimate.
    • Non-withheld PIT (annual & estimated payments) is $302.9 million, or 18.9%, higher than the estimate.
  • Non-tax revenues are $84.3 million, or 2.1%, higher than the estimate.

Fiscal Year 2021-22 vs. Fiscal Year 2020-21:

  • Total General Fund revenues through February are $4.7 billion, or 19.7%, more than last year at this time. $3.84 billion of the overage is the result of a transfer of federal stimulus funds into the General Fund for revenue replacement.
  • General Fund tax revenue is $1.26 billion, or 5.5%, higher than last year.
  • Corporation taxes are $324.5 million, or 13.1%, higher.
  • Sales and use tax collections are $782.7 million, or 9.4%, higher than last year through February.
  • Personal income tax collections trail last year’s collections by $189.1 million, or 1.9%, because the prior fiscal year’s PIT revenues included significant one-time amounts shifted into FY 2020-21 from FY 2019-20 due to the pandemic.
  • Non-tax revenues are $3.4 billion more than last fiscal year through February because of the $3.84 billion deposit of federal stimulus money into the General Fund this fiscal year.

Motor License Fund:

  • Motor License Fund revenues exceed the estimate by $36.2 million, or 2%, through February.
  • Motor License Fund revenues are $39.4 million, or 2.2%, more than last fiscal year at this time.

Russian Business Divestment at the Commonwealth

In light of Russia’s unprovoked attack against Ukraine, a sovereign and democratic nation, the Pennsylvania Treasury immediately began divesting its holdings in all Russian-based companies last week. The vast majority of those assets have already been liquidated. A few remain in the process and will be liquidated as soon as possible. While these holdings were very minimal, immediate action was necessary to protect Pennsylvania taxpayers and to show our support for Ukraine.

We did not have much invested there – about $2.9 million in value compared to $37 billion in our total portfolio. That’s less than one one-hundredth of a percent. But every dollar matters. We must protect Pennsylvania taxpayers and stand with Ukraine.

Almost all of the divestment is already complete.

Summary of PA Treasury holdings:

  • 31 Russian companies

Total $2.9 million value

What has already been sold:

  • 28 Russian companies

Total $2.7 million value

What is in the process of being sold:

  • 3 Russian companies

Similarly, the board of the Public School Employees’ Retirement System voted unanimously on March 3 to divest up to $300 million it has invested in Russia and Belarus as a protest against the Russian invasion of Ukraine. 

The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (PLCB) instructed all Fine Wine & Good Spirits stores and licensee service centers to remove Russian-made products from shelves as a show of solidarity and support for the people of Ukraine at the end of February. Russian-made Special Order products are also no longer available.

According to the PLCB, although some producers give their vodkas Russian-themed names, few products carried by Fine Wine & Good Spirits are actually sourced from Russia. Only two products stocked in stores – Russian Standard and Ustianochka vodkas – and about a half-dozen Special Order brands come from Russia.

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