State tax collections were 'disappointing' in January

jbrammer@herald-leader.comFebruary 10, 2014 

FRANKFORT — Revenue receipts for the state General Fund dipped 0.9 percent in January compared to a year earlier, a decrease of $7.4 million, the state budget director's office said Monday.

Total revenue for the General Fund last month was $831.2 million, compared to $838.6 million during January 2013. The General Fund pays for most state programs.

Receipts have grown 0.9 percent for the first seven months of this fiscal year, which began July 1.

The official revenue estimate for the year calls for 2.1 percent growth in the General Fund. To meet that estimate, revenue will have to grow 3.9 percent in the last five months of the fiscal year.

State budget director Jane Driskell said General Fund receipts were down across the board with the exception of property taxes, which posted "strong gains."

"January tax collections were disappointing in almost every account, particularly the income taxes," she said.

Driskell said a tax amnesty program created a "high hurdle for growth" this year, but "as the 'amnesty effect' works through the collection process, we anticipate that growth over the prior year will accelerate to achieve the official estimates."

Meanwhile, Road Fund receipts for January totaled $125.1 million, a 3.9 percent increase over 2013 levels. Year-to-date receipts for fiscal year 2014 have grown 6.6 percent.

The official Road Fund estimate calls for an increase in revenue of 6.1 percent for the fiscal year. Based on year-to-date tax collections, revenue must grow 5.5 percent for the rest of fiscal year 2014 to meet that estimate.

Jack Brammer: (502) 227-1198. Twitter: @BGPolitics. Blog: bluegrasspolitics.bloginky.com

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