State tax revenue declines by 10.9%


POSTED: Tuesday, November 10, 2009

State tax collection have dropped again.

A monthly report issued yesterday by the state Tax Department shows that compared with the same period last year, the state has collected 10.9 percent less in the first four months of the fiscal year.

The state's general excise tax dropped 12.9 percent. The hotel room tax also dropped 12.9 percent.

Despite the drop, House Finance Committee Chairman Marcus Oshiro said he would not recommend a tax increase when the Legislature meets in January.

“;We will look at elimination of some programs, vertical cuts to some programs or services,”; Oshiro said.

“;Until we get a better read on the community's willingness to pay more for government services or live with less services, we are saying no to any increase in taxes,”; Oshiro said.

In the Senate, Sen. Donna Mercado Kim, Ways and Means Committee chairwoman, said yesterday she would introduce a bill next year taking $40 million from the counties' portion of the hotel room tax.

The money would go from the counties' budget to the state's general fund, Kim said.

According to the Tax Department, the state has so far collected $1.38 billion in the first four months of the fiscal year. At this time last year, it had collected $1.55 billion.