General Fund receipts show slight increase in August compared to last year’s figures, Chilton says

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State Budget Director John Chilton has reported that General Fund receipts increased 1.0 percent in August compared to last year.

Total revenues for the month were $728.3 million, compared to $721.4 million during August 2016. So far this fiscal year (FY18), General Fund receipts have increased 2.0 percent.

Chilton noted that even though growth through the first two months of the fiscal year has been tepid, the revenue situation is an improvement over the last six months of FY17, in which aggregate revenue collections were collectively negative.

“Strength in the income taxes has pushed total General Fund revenues into positive territory thus far in FY18,” he said.

However, the sales and gross receipts taxes continue to create considerable drag with receipts falling behind the lackluster pace set in FY17. Until the sales tax picks up, monthly General Fund receipts will continue to post unremarkable monthly totals. The Consensus Forecasting Group met in August and agreed on a General Fund planning estimate which calls for growth of 1.8 percent this fiscal year.

Compared to the estimates included in the 2018 budget, the August planning estimate is $206.2 million below budgeted levels for FY18. The group will meet again in October and December before rendering a final revenue estimate.”

The official revenue estimate for FY18 calls for revenue to increase 3.8 percent compared to FY17 actual receipts. Based on Augusts’ results, General Fund revenues need to grow 4.1 percent for the remainder of the fiscal year to meet the official estimate.

Among the major accounts:

• Individual income taxes rose 1.0 percent as withholding and estimated payments posted gains.
• Sales tax revenues fell 3.3 percent in August and have declined 1.3 percent through the first two months of the fiscal year.
• Corporation income tax collections increased $7.2 million as declaration payments and net returns both grew. Year-to-date receipts have grown by $7.0 million.
• Cigarette taxes grew 7.8 percent for the month but have fallen 4.9 percent for the year.
• Property taxes increased 4.8 percent and have grown 8.0 percent for the fiscal year.

• Coal severance tax collections in August fell 2.7 percent but are up 8.8 percent through the first two months of the fiscal year.
• Lottery revenues were unchanged at $18.5 million in August and are on par with FY17 collections through the first two months of FY18.

Road Fund revenue grew 3.9 percent in August with revenues of $144.6 million but have fallen 1.6 percent for the first two months of the fiscal year. Motor vehicle usage tax collections grew strongly due, in part, to a timing issue related to July collections. Motor fuels revenues declined slightly for the month. T

he official Road Fund revenue estimate calls for a 2.0 percent decrease in receipts for the FY18. Based on year-to-date collections, revenues can decline 2.1 percent for the remainder of the fiscal year to meet the estimate.

Among the accounts:

• Motor fuels fell 0.4 percent in August and have decreased 0.8 percent for the year.
• Motor vehicle usage collections increased 9.8 percent for the month but have declined 2.3 percent for the first two months of the fiscal year.
• License and privilege tax grew 2.6 percent.

Additional information is available here.

From state Budget Office

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