FRANKFORT — State revenues were up nearly 7 percent in July over the previous year, Kentucky budget officials said Wednesday.
Revenues — taxes and fees — were $693.2 million, a 6.9 percent increase from July 2010 receipts. July continues an upward trend for state revenues, which have seen strong growth over the past five quarters after bottoming out over the past three years.
The Consensus Forecasting Group — a task force of economists that predict the state's revenues based on a host of economic indicators — said last week that the state appears to be poised for a $192 million surplus this fiscal year, which ends June 30, 2012. The state finished the past fiscal year in the black, depositing $121 million in the state's rainy-day fund.
"Kentucky has seen a strengthening of general fund revenue collections for the past five quarters, and the commonwealth's economic recovery is continuing into the new fiscal year," said Mary Lassiter, the state budget director.
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The main drivers for the increase include individual income taxes, which were up 11.5 percent, and coal severance taxes, which increased 18.1 percent over July 2010 collections.
However, the Consensus Forecasting Group warned last week that the recovery is fragile. Unemployment has stubbornly remained in the double digits, and the financial markets are leery of foreign debt problems in Western Europe.
Road-fund revenues — used to pay for transportation projects — rose 2.3 percent compared to July 2010, the state budget office reported.