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R.I. Department of Revenue releases April 2017 cash collections report

Providence, R.I. -- The Rhode Island Department of Revenue today released its FY 2017 Cash Collections Report for April 2017. The Cash Collections Report, which is issued on a monthly basis, compares current fiscal year cash collections by revenue item on a fiscal year-to-date and monthly basis to prior fiscal year cash collections by revenue item. The cash collections report makes no adjustments for the timeliness of the receipt of revenues and provides readers with insight into the state's cash flow over the course of the fiscal year.

Rhode Island Department of Revenue Director Robert S. Hull noted: "FY 2017 total general revenue cash collections through April are down 0.9 percent, or $27.0 million less than was received last fiscal year through April of 2016. The April results are a modest improvement over March." The growth rate for FY 2017 through April of 0.9 percent was considerably below the 1.7 percent growth rate recorded in the previous year. FY 2017 personal income tax cash collections through April were $24.9 million less than in FY 2016 through April while FY 2017 through April sales and use tax cash collections were $16.1 million more than the same period in FY 2016. FY 2017 through April departmental receipts were greater than the same period in FY 2016 by a total of $16.3 million. The lottery transfer for the FY 2017 year-to-date period through April was $5.5 million less than the same period in FY 2016 while fiscal year-to-date through April 2017 all other revenues were $29.0 million less than the same period last year.

Notable cash collections items on an April fiscal year-to-date basis included: Total personal income tax cash collections of approximately $1.031 billion, down $24.9 million or 2.4 percent year-to-date. o Personal income tax withholding payments up $37.5 million or 4.1 percent year to date, more than the 2.9 percent fiscal year to date growth rate recorded in April 2016. This increase includes the receipt of a large, infrequently occurring payment of $3.3 million in August 2016 and $2.1 million of receipts that were posted to personal income tax withholding rather than insurance companies gross premiums taxes cash collections. o Personal income tax final payments up $7.1 million, or 4.2 percent year-to-date, a continued reversal from the 12.0 percent fiscal year-to-date growth rate for the same period last fiscal year. o Personal income tax refunds and adjustments up $70.3 million year-to-date due primarily to the Division of Taxation working down the backlog of personal income tax refunds that resulted from enhanced fraud protocols and processing changes employed for the TY 2015 filing season and more rapid processing of TY 2016 income tax refunds. FY 2017 year-to-date April personal income tax refunds and adjustments tax cash collections also include a $2.1 million negative adjustment to account for receipts transferred from personal income tax withholding. Year-to-date April 2017 sales and use tax cash collections up $16.1 million, or 2.0 percent, from FY 2016 through April although the spread recorded in April 2017 fiscal year-to-date is below the 2.4 percent growth recorded in April 2016 fiscal year-to-date. FY 2017 through April business corporations tax cash collections are $12.5 million less than for the same period last fiscal year and significantly below the $12.1 million difference between fiscal year-to-date periods recorded in April 2016. FY 2017 all other general revenue sources cash collections through April are down $29.0 million, including the $12.5 million shortfall in business corporations tax cash collections, relative to last fiscal year at this time, due in large part to fiscal year-to-date-over-fiscal year-to-date declines in motor vehicle license and registration fees, public utilities gross earnings tax, cigarette and other tobacco products excise tax, and estate and transfer tax cash collections. These fiscal year-to-date over fiscal year-to-date declines are offst by increases in financial institutions and insurance companies gross premiums tax cash collections. Fiscal year-to-date through April 2017 departmental receipts cash collections are $16.3 million, or 5.4 percent, more than in FY 2016 through April primarily due to increased FY 2016 hospital licensing fee payments received in July 2016. The year-to-date FY 2017 lottery transfer, which is included in all other general revenue sources above, is down $5.5 million from the same period last fiscal year due in large part to a significant decline in traditional lottery games cash collections and substantive underperformance in Twin River video lottery terminals offset in part by improved results from Twin River's traditional table games and poker tables and Newport Grand's video lottery terminals.

Notable month of April cash collections items included: April 2017 personal income tax cash collections of $163.6 million, 11.2 percent below April 2016 and modestly below the 5.4 percent growth rate recorded last year. o April 2017 personal income tax withholding payments cash collections were down 3.6 percent, or $3.3 million, versus April 2016. o A year-over-year increase in April 2017 personal income tax refunds and adjustments of $7.1 million including a $3.1 million positive adjustment to transfer receipts to personal income tax withholding from financial institutions tax cash collections. o April 2017 personal income tax final payments were down 5.4 percent or $6.9 million less than April 2016. April 2017 sales and use tax cash collections of $80.0 million are 5.3 percent above April 2016. The increase in April 2017 sales and use tax cash collections is the result of an across the board increase in the components of the sales and use tax: net Taxation receipts, registry receipts, and sales and use tax payments from the Providence Place Mall. April 2017 business corporations tax cash collections are $6.2 million more than in April 2016. It should be noted that the filing deadline for returns and final payments for calendar year C-corporations shifted from March 15, 2016 for TY 2015 returns to April 15, 2017 for TY 2016 returns. Higher all other revenues cash collections than in April 2016 by a total of $21.8 million or 65.9 percent, including the $6.2 million overage in business corporations tax cash collections. Multi-million dollar increases in financial institutions, insurance companies gross premiums, and estate and transfer tax cash collections are driving this excess. Increased lottery transfer for April 2017 of $1.6 million or 5.1 percent versus April 2016. o A significant year-over-year increase in the transfer from the video lottery terminals at Twin River were the main cause of the gain.

The full cash collections report can be found on the Department of Revenue's web site, www.dor.ri,gov, under the Revenue Analysis directory or at this link: http://www.dor.ri.gov/revenue-analysis/2017.php under the State Reports tab.

Questions or comments on the report should be directed to Paul Grimaldi, Chief of Information and Public Relations by e-mail at paul.grimaldi@revenue.ri.gov or by phone at (401) 574-8766.

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