State revenues continued to trail expectations in October as the first effects of Superstorm Sandy were felt on the state's collections last month.
Year to date, revenue collections are $263 million short of projections, with the bulk of the shortfall coming from sales tax, which is off $119 million from expectations for the first four months of the fiscal year.
Though the full brunt of Sandy's impact has been felt this month, casino closings and sales taxes were likely off due to the storm, which slammed the state on Oct. 29. For the month of October, casino revenue was off $5.3 million, putting the year to date shortfall at $21.5 million.
Corporation business taxes were off $70 million for the month of October, which according to State Treasurer Andrew Sidamon-Eristoff, was due to an "unusual and large refund."
At $2.69 billion for the year, income tax collections have exceeded expectations by 1.6 percent, or $43 million.
It's unknown whether Sandy's destruction has taken a proposed tax cut off the table as Gov. Chris Christie has said he will wait to assess the damage before making any decisions. For their part, Democrats have said they will wait until the end of the year to gauge the state's financial picture before deciding on a tax cut and both sides have said any decision has no doubt been delayed by the storm.
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"Gov. Chris Christie says he won’t campaign for the Republican gubernatorial candidate in New York because the cause is hopeless: Gov. Andrew Cuomo is ahead by more than 30 points. But he will campaign in New Hampshire, over and over, where the Republican is also trailing by more than 30 points. What’s the reason? It may be that New Hampshire holds the nation’s first presidential primary. It may be that he doesn’t want to mess with Cuomo, who knows where the skeletons are buried at the Port Authority. But one thing is certain: Gov. Straight Talk is spinning again. And it seems to be habit-forming." - columnist Tom Moran- Star-Ledger
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