Secretary of the Agency of Administration Jeb Spaulding has released the November revenue results for the state, and things are looking better than last year - state revenues for Nov. 2011 were $78.6 million, or about 2.9 percent ahead of the forecast. That puts the state about $12 million ahead of the forecast for the fiscal year thus far.
“Naturally, we are pleased that General fund revenues continued a positive trend for the month and
through the first five months of the fiscal year. All four of the major tax sources - Personal Income,
Sales & Use, Rooms and Meals, and Corporate Income - are ahead of target and last year’s actual
results, for the month and year to date,” Spaulding said in a press release announcing the results.
The forecast was approved by the Emergency Board in July; the next meeting of that board - made up of the Governor and the chairs of the four 'money' committees in the House and Senate - comes on January 18 of 2012. At that meeting, the E-Board will also take up a number of mid-budget year requests for adjustments on the expense side, including a request for more district technicians from the Agency of Transportation (which are somewhat related to Irene recovery efforts, but the agency is also recommending become permanent), and a new need from the Dept. of Fish and Wildlife, which is facing a budget shortfall. Irene accounted for $25 million in shortfalls in this year's budget so far, according to officials.
While personal income and corporate tax receipts, and consumption taxes like the Sales & Use tax are ahead of forecast, real estate transfer taxes are down, more than 30% below the forecast for November and more than 11% below the fiscal year to date forecast.
Transportation Fund receipts are up, which helps provide more bonding capacity for VTrans, according to Spaulding, while the Education Fund non-property tax income was ahead of forecast for November, but still lagging slightly for the fiscal year to date.
“It is definitely good news that the General Fund has exceeded target for the fourth consecutive month. However, uncertainty from the continuing global economic instability and the unknown extent of federal budget cuts require us to remain cautious. While the current results indicate a positive note for the current fiscal year (FY 2012), there remains a good deal of uncertainty for FY 2013. We look towards the January Consensus Revenue Forecast revision, scheduled for consideration by the Emergency Board on January 18, 2012, with interest and what we hope will be a clearer picture of the revenue future for our three major funds," Spaulding said in the release.