10/2/2013 8:24 AM
by Nadine Grimley
CHARLESTON - State tax collections in the fiscal year's first quarter are more than $34 million below estimates.
Figures from the state budget office showed that tax collections declined for the fifth consecutive month in September. Last month's tax collections were about two million dollars below estimates. Deputy Revenue Secretary Mark Muchow said that the decline was due to sluggish wages and consumer spending.
First-quarter personal income tax collections were down 4.6% from the previous fiscal year. Sales tax collections since July were down about $943,000.
Muchow said the state needed revenue growth of at least 2.8% during the next nine months to avoid a deficit.