CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- West Virginia's tax collections fell about $14 million short in August, driven mostly by a drop in personal income tax collections.
The state collected $114.6 million in personal income taxes in August, falling about $4.4 million short of estimates.
The state Department of Revenue released its August revenue reports on Tuesday.
Deputy Revenue Secretary Mark Muchow said West Virginia has collected $226.8 million in personal income taxes since the new fiscal year began in July. That's significantly less than the estimated $260 million.
"It's a combination of the tax credit program that's since been appealed, as well as very sluggish personal income and wage growth," Muchow said.
Muchow is referencing a tax break for alternative fuel vehicles, originally meant to provide tax credits for individuals and businesses who purchased natural gas or propane-powered vehicles.
Lawmakers vastly expanded the tax break in the last hours of the 2011 legislative session, however, opening it up for owners of any alternative fuel vehicles. Legislators repealed the tax credit during this year's session, but many residents had already taken advantage of the break.
Muchow previously has estimated the credit could cost the state about $100 million.
Severance tax collections also fell short in August, although year-to-date collections are outperforming estimates.
The state collected $34.3 million in severance taxes in August, $2.8 million less than budget estimates. Collections are about $4 million ahead of projections through the first two months of fiscal year 2014, however, bringing in $57 million.
That's about $10.7 million more than was collected in the first two months of fiscal year 2013, an increase of 23 percent.
Muchow said much of those increases were driven by the state's natural gas industry.
"We're seeing higher natural gas production, which is positive," he said, noting natural gas prices also have improved.