Tennessee’s ever-growing budget problems got a little bit worse today when January sales tax revenues were released.
Negative growth in sales tax collections continued, with overall January revenues coming in at $947.4 million, which is $16.1 million less than the state budgeted.
"January is the 20th consecutive month in which sales taxes have recorded negative growth." Finance and Administration Commissioner Dave Goetz said. "January collections represent December holiday sales, which brought reports of positive growth at the national level, so it's very disappointing that we didn't have a similar experience in Tennessee.
"Despite the severe national recession, the state will continue to monitor spending in order to end the fiscal year with a balanced budget as required by the state's constitution," Goetz said.
The January growth rate was negative 1.86 percent. For six months revenues are under collected by $159.0 million. The year-to-date growth rate for six months was negative 5.72 percent.
Franchise and excise taxes combined were $11.3 million above the budgeted estimate of $128.5 million. For six months revenues are over collected by $5.9 million.
Gasoline and motor fuel collections for January increased by 5.77 percent but were $4.2 million below the budgeted estimate of $71.2 million. For six months revenues are under collected by $14.1 million.
Tobacco tax collections were $451,000 above the budgeted estimate of $21.9 million, and for six months they are $4.3 million over the budgeted estimate.
Inheritance and estate taxes were over-collected by $1.8 million for the month.
All other taxes were under-collected by a net of $5.1 million.
Year-to-date collections for six months were $185.1 million less than the budgeted estimate. The general fund was under-collected by $152.3 million and the four other funds were under-collected by $32.8 million.