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RALEIGH, NC (AP) — North Carolina’s overall tax collections are essentially staying in line with what lawmakers agreed were needed to operate state government this year.

The legislature’s top staff economist told legislators this week that collections are just $12 million ahead of projections for the nine months ending March 31. Barry Boardman says while personal income tax withholdings are down by $221 million, higher-than-expected sales and corporate income taxes are $190 million higher.

Boardman attributes lower withholdings largely to timing issues with the new tax laws and slower wage and salary growth.

Lawmakers and Gov. Pat McCrory are now waiting for April 15 tax collections to determine whether there will be a surplus or shortfall that requires belt-tightening before June 30.

Legislators return next month to adjust next year’s $21 billion state budget.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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