Missouri’s revenues rose more than expected during the month of May.
The state collected about $6.6 billion in revenue last month, compared to just under $6.4 billion in May of 2011. Governor Jay Nixon’s Budget Director, Linda Luebbering, credits most of the improvement to higher collections of state income and sales taxes.
“That's the good news, things are picking up," Luebbering said. "I think we do have to be cautious, still, because of what’s going on at the national and particularly the international picture, with European Union issues and everything that's going on globally that could have some bearing on the overall economy.”
Despite the uptick in state revenues, Luebbering says there are no plans to release additional money that the governor has been withholding from the current year’s state budget, which ends June 30th.
“We’re about on track with where we need to be, and that means the expenditure restrictions that we have in place would need to stay in place, because those expenditure restrictions were in line with forecasted revenue," Luebbering said.
Meanwhile, Governor Nixon has until June 30th to sign next year’s state budget into law. He may decide to cut the budget even further than lawmakers did during this year’s legislative session by line-item veto or by simply withholding money from various state agencies.
Sales and use tax collections were up 4.7 percent through May. Individual income tax collections were 3.4 percent through the first 11 months of the fiscal year. The state's bottom line also was helped by the fact that it has paid out fewer tax refunds than last year.
Corporate income taxes were down 9.9 percent for the year.