IFO: Year-to-date revenue collections down one percent

A report out this week from Pennsylvania’s Independent Fiscal Office shows year-to-date General Fund revenue collections as of August were down just under one percent from August 2014.

According to the IFO, the Commonwealth collected $1.87 million in August, bringing FY 2015-2016 collections to about $4 billion, a decrease of $34 million from FY 2014-2015.

August General Fund collections, however, were up 4.3 percent when compared to the monthly collections for August 2014.

The collections numbers were largely confirmed by the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue in a release Wednesday.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
IFO revenue estimate: short term positives, long term uncertainties

IFO revenue estimate: short term positives, long term uncertainties

According to the initial FY 2015-2016 revenue estimate released Monday by the Independent Fiscal Office, revenue projections for the short-term appear rosier than original estimates suggested.

The report notes that while currently positive trends in terms of low inflation, increased consumer spending, and larger corporate profits have led to an increase of revenue projections, uncertainties pertaining to the cause of corporate revenue growth and the use of one-time revenue sources in the current fiscal year cloud the prospect of long-term positive growth.

“The revisions we are making now are good news short-term, but long term it is unclear how it is going to play out,” said IFO Director Matthew Knittel during Monday’s briefing. “Much of these revenues could not be carried forward.”

As an overview, IFO’s revised estimate now puts FY 2014-2015 General Fund revenue estimates at $30.6 billion, which they say is a $1.9 billion increase over the prior fiscal year and $594 million higher than the original estimate in August.

Monday, May 4, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views

IFO report says Gov. Wolf’s revenue proposals will increase taxes across all income levels

The Independent Fiscal Office Thursday released a required analysis of revenue proposals articulated in Gov. Tom Wolf’s budget proposal and finds that the proposals will raise taxes on Pennsylvanians among all income brackets.

The report indicates that by FY 2019-2020, the proposals will increase net state and local tax revenues by $5.2 billion, which comprises of $9.8 billion in tax increases and $4.6 billion in tax and rent relief.

“Those new funds will be used to support additional spending on various priorities identified in the Executive Budget,” the report reads. “The proposals implement substantive changes to the current tax system and they will have disparate impacts across the Commonwealth based on a resident’s income level, consumption patterns, and school district of residence.”

Thursday, April 23, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
IFO downgrades structural deficit by as much as $400 million

IFO downgrades structural deficit by as much as $400 million

The Independent Fiscal Office reported to the House Appropriations Committee Monday that the structural deficit facing budget crafters might be less than originally thought.

Asked by Chairman Bill Adolph (R-Delaware) about how increased revenues have impacted a previously reported IFO deficit estimate of $1.8 billion, Office director Matthew Knittel reported it has been reduced by $300-$400 million landing somewhere around $1.5 billion.

“We would revise it down to somewhere around $1.5 [billion] or $1.6 [billion],” he told committee members while noting it is difficult to determine the exact number due to supplemental appropriations.

Monday, March 9, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views

A Closer Look: The Independent Fiscal Office with Director Matthew Knittel

The PLS Reporter sat down with Matthew Knittel, director of the Independent Fiscal Office, to take a deeper look at what the IFO does and how it operates.

Knittel discussed a history of the agency since its formation in 2010 and the various reports completed by the office and other accomplishments since its inception.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014/Author: Josh Levy
Categories: News and Views