/State revenue strong for just completed fiscal year after multiple years of mediocre growth

State revenue strong for just completed fiscal year after multiple years of mediocre growth

The state’s fiscal year ended June 30, which saw a healthy increase in revenue, comes at a crucial time for its political leaders. They will be facing primary elections in August and the general electoral in November. The strong revenue collections will provide a cushion for legislative leaders and governor as they develop a budget later in the fiscal year to finance education, health care, and law enforcement. The Legislative Budget Committee staff released a report that showed total general fund revenue collections of $5.97 billion, or $277.4 millions more than the previous fiscal year. Although final numbers may need to be adjusted, the Budget Committee report stated that the budget committee staff generally adheres to the initial report. Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves is running for Republican nomination as governor. He said that tax cuts made in previous sessions are paying off. Reeves stated in a statement that “the other side” claims that the state’s tax cuts are not paying off, but he said they were. He also added that Mississippi has seen its largest tax cut in Mississippi history and has reduced regulations and red tape. This is causing our economy to grow at levels it hasn’t seen in many years. After four years of slow growth, Mississippians now have strong revenue collections. Beginning in fiscal 2015, revenue collections started to decline. After the Legislature had passed more than 50 tax cuts, which amounted to over $300 million per year, the slowdown began. In 2016, the Legislature passed the state’s largest tax cut, which will take $415million in current dollars from the general fund. This was in addition to the 10 year-long total. The 2016 tax cut will have a $92 million negative effect on the general fund in the current fiscal year. The tax cuts have been criticized by Jim Hood, Attorney General and candidate for Governor. He stated that Mississippi’s growth rate has been slower than most states, even those in the surrounding states. He said that Mississippi’s economy has stagnated due to all the giveaways. The tax cuts have meant that the state is unable to meet its financial needs. The state budget was cut by more than $360million in 2017-18. This resulted in cuts to services in mental health as well as in other areas. The most significant revenue growth for the last fiscal year was in the use tax collections. This is a 7. percent tax on items bought outside of the state via the internet, magazine sales, or other means. The use tax collection grew by 26.8%, or $68.9million. Corporate tax collections increased by 12.5 percent, or $71.4 Million. Most of the recent tax cuts, including a significant portion of the 2016 tax cut bill were aimed at lowering corporate taxes. Although corporate tax collections rose to $643.7 million in the last fiscal year, they still fell $70 million below the $714.1 million peak reached in fiscal 2015. The two largest revenue sources, sales and personal income, saw modest growth at $55.1 million, or 2.65 percent, for sales tax, and $71.5 million, or 3.9 percent, for personal income. Casino gambling generated $6.8 million more revenue, or 5.2 percent. Due to federal and state laws changes, most Mississippi casinos have allowed betting on sporting events since the last fiscal year. This has helped to stimulate some growth in the casino industry._x000D