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Archive for Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Kansas officials say state revenue for August exceeded forecasts by nearly $17 million

August 31, 2011

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— Kansas’ revenue collections in August exceeded official forecasts by $16.8 million, officials said Wednesday, suggesting more positive signs for the state’s economy.

The Department of Revenue released the figures showing the fifth month in a row that Kansas revenues beat expectations. Total revenue in August was $436.4 million, compared with the $419.6 million forecast for the month back in April.

Kansas revenues are running $40.2 million ahead of estimates for the first two months of the state’s fiscal year, which began July 1. When factoring in the positive collections in April through June and cuts to state spending approved by the 2011 Legislature, Kansas is projected to end the next fiscal year with close to $200 million in cash reserves.

Revenue Secretary Nick Jordan said the new figures were positive, but cautioned that “the economy is still fragile and we have a lot of work to do.”

“The healthy rise in state sales and use taxes show an increase in confidence by businesses and citizens,” Jordan said. “We are working hard to keep the recovery going by focusing on creating a pro-growth environment in Kansas to attract private-sector jobs.”

Jordan said the sales tax collections showed an improvement over previous months in which collections were flat or had minimal growth.

Republican Gov. Sam Brownback has asked Jordan to lead a task force that is looking at the state’s overall tax structure and to make recommendations for modifying the state’s tax rates. One idea proposed by some House Republicans during the 2011 legislative session was to phase out or eliminate entirely the state’s income tax to make the state more attractive to businesses.

However, Democrats and advocates for the arts argue that Brownback should reverse his veto of $700,000 in funding for the Kansas Arts Commission, in light of growing state revenues. The governor deleted the state funding in May, saying the money was needed elsewhere in government to fund core programs such as public safety, education and social services.

Sales tax collections exceeded the forecast by $7.1 million. Individual income taxes totaled $3.4 million more than the forecast, while corporate incomes tax payments beat the estimate by $524,000.

Monthly targets were set in April by a group of economists and are used to prepare the state budget. Overall, the economists predicted that Kansas would collect about $5.7 billion in the current fiscal year.

Comments

tomatogrower 2 years, 7 months ago

I'm sure he'll figure out a way to give it to the oil industry, or to some of his mega church buddies. They all need new limos and their drivers are demanding raises again. Not to mention those expensive trophy wives.

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giveitback 2 years, 7 months ago

Pay your debts Govenor. Give the money to KPERS!!!!!

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sciencegeek 2 years, 7 months ago

It would be interesting to know where the extra money came from. The weather has hurt agriculture, the economy has hit airplanes and machinery, and wages sure haven't gone up. Is this a true increase, or just a cash flow thing? There should be details somewhere.

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trinity 2 years, 7 months ago

So how 'bout a COLA for state employees who haven't seen one in a long time?? Oh that's right-cookies and ice cream Friday at the Capital. Mileage reimbursement? Administrative leave so we don't have to use vacation time? hmmm?

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Flap Doodle 2 years, 7 months ago

Let's blow it on statues of Lenin floating in jars of wee-wee!

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thuja 2 years, 7 months ago

There's our arts money, no problem.

Legalize Art!

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observant 2 years, 7 months ago

Great, now brownie can can hire some more out of state, faith based nuts at inflated salaries to continue destroying more current state employees jobs.

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edjayhawk 2 years, 7 months ago

I guess it gives 'ole Sam some money to further his Christian Right agenda.

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question4u 2 years, 7 months ago

There's a $180 million dollar surplus and now August revenue collections are $17 million above forecast, but according to the Governor's Office, Kansas is "behind on the mortgage." We're told that the state is broke and there was no alternative but to slash education, funding for the arts and services for the sick and the poor.

Is Flim-Flam Sam losing his touch? The illusion has gotten pretty shabby. It's not hard to scam yokels though, so maybe he doesn't worry too much about fumbling with the shells and pea.

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edjayhawk 2 years, 7 months ago

Do what you promised to do Brownback in your campaign: JOBS, JOBS, JOBS!!!

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ksrush 2 years, 7 months ago

So when the budget picture starts to get better and many of these programs start to make a comeback how crazy will Sam be ? Funny thing we didn't tax and spend our way to this position, too bad Barney O can't see that

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Bob_Keeshan 2 years, 7 months ago

But the state raised taxes only 13 months ago.

This jobs killing tax increase ruined our economy for the foreseeable future, or so I've been told.

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jhawkinsf 2 years, 7 months ago

They could refund it to the people who earned it.

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oneeye_wilbur 2 years, 7 months ago

Good, then give back the rent the residents and taxpayers of Douglas County and the City of Lawrence paid for the SRS buidling to stay open.

17 million and what is planning to be done with it?

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