Report shows sunny revenue forecast for Idaho

By Cameron Rasmusson
Reader Staff

Gov. Brad Little’s office is celebrating the release this week of better-than-expected revenue collection throughout Idaho.

Gov. Brad Little.

According to an Idaho General Fund Revenue report released by the Governor’s Office Division of Financial Management, Idaho General Fund collections in May 2019 were 12.8% higher than those collected last year. The figure easily outclasses the 4.7% growth predicted by the office.

“May’s surplus follows April’s $36.1 million surplus,” the report reads. “Combined, these surpluses have reduced the fiscal year-to-date deficit from $75.8 million in March to $22.1 million this month. Receipts for the fiscal year to date through May are $3,373.4 million, which is 0.7% lower than expected.”

The boost in revenue is primarily due to strong corporate income tax and sales tax collections, as well as miscellaneous receipts, according to the report. On the corporate income tax side, unexpectedly low refunds helped the state retain more revenue. Meanwhile, sales tax collections exceeded expectations in all but three months of this year. An individual income tax shortfall of $1.5 million was the lowest of the year, and a house bill directing the state controller to transfer $9 million from the Consumer Protection Fund to the General Fund also helped bolster revenue numbers.

“The latest state revenue figures reflect continued strength in Idaho’s economy,” said Little. “May’s numbers are up 7.7% compared to forecast, and we are currently projecting a $100 million fiscal year ending balance. I am proud of Idaho’s conservative, fiscally responsible approach to governing!“

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