Tennessee revenue collections for December came in stronger than the same month a year before. Finance and Administration Commissioner Mark Emkes reported Thursday that state revenue collections for December were $982.2 million, which is 1.71% above December 2011. December sales tax collections represent consumer spending that occurred in November.
“Total revenues in December were higher than expected due to over collections in the sales and corporate tax categories,” Mr. Emkes said. “We believe the December sales tax growth rate, which includes ‘Black Friday’ and after-Thanksgiving sales, may reflect renewed consumer confidence, but January’s report will give us a fuller picture with Christmas retail activity.
“Because of anticipated requirements for Fiscal Year 2014, we will closely monitor our spending for the balance of this year, working closely with the Legislature in order to end this year with a balanced budget.”
On an accrual basis, December is the fifth month in the 2012-2013 fiscal year.
December collections were $22.0 million more than the budgeted estimate. The general fund was over collected by $24.8 million and the four other funds were under collected by $2.8 million.
Sales tax collections were $11.7 million more than the estimate for December. The December growth rate was 5.01%. For five months revenues are under collected by $18.3 million, and the year-to-date growth rate is 2.51%.
Franchise and excise taxes combined were $12.6 million above the budgeted estimate of $230.4 million. For five months revenues are over collected by $91.4 million.
Gasoline and motor fuel collections for December decreased by 7.52% and they were $3.4 million below the budgeted estimate of $66.1 million. For five months revenues are under collected by $11.8 million.
Tobacco tax collections were $2.2 million below the budgeted estimate of $24.9 million, and for five months they are $6.7 million below the budgeted estimate.
Privilege tax collections were $3.8 million more than the budgeted estimate of $14.5 million. Year-to-date collections for five months are $10.8 million above the budgeted estimate.
Inheritance and estate taxes were under collected by $1.6 million for the month. For five months collections are $4.4 million above the budgeted estimate.
All other taxes were over collected by a net of $1.1 million.
Year-to-date collections for five months were $73.6 million more than the budgeted estimate. The general fund was over collected by $84.1 million and the four other funds were under collected by $10.5 million.
The budgeted revenue estimates for 2012-2013 are based on the State Funding Board’s consensus recommendation of Dec. 19, 2011, and adopted by the second session of the 107th General Assembly in April 2012. They are available on the state’s website at http://www.tn.gov/finance/bud/budget.html.
The State Funding Board met on Dec. 14, 2012, to hear updated revenue projections from the state’s various economists. The board met again on Dec. 19, and adopted revised revenue ranges for 2012-2013. The revised ranges assume an over collection from the July 2012 budgeted estimate in the amount of $203.0 million to $287.3 million in total taxes and in the amount of $224.2 million to $305.9 million in general fund taxes for the current fiscal year.