November's state general revenue fund collections were up 3.8 percent over last year, but still fell 7.9 percent short of the official estimate upon which the current state budget is based, according to figures released Wednesday by the state Office of Management and Enterprise Services.
The new monthly figures continue a trend of general revenue fund collections falling short of expectations during the first five months of the current fiscal year.
The general revenue fund is the primary funding source for state government agencies.
“Agencies need to be realistic and prepare to make due with what they already have,” said Preston Doerflinger, director of the Office of Management and Enterprise Services.
So far, that hasn't happened.
In fact, state agencies to date have submitted budget requests seeking more than $1 billion in new appropriations, said John Estus, spokesman for Doerflinger's agency.
Sluggish collections are expected to complicate legislative efforts to meet pay raise expectations of state employees and fully fund such things as promised improvements in the state's child welfare system that were agreed upon as part of a settlement to a federal lawsuit.
From July through November, general revenue fund collections totaled $2.1 billion, which is $146.8 million, or 6.5 percent, below the official estimate. Collections trail last year's actual cumulative collections by $30.6 million, or 1.4 percent.
General revenue fund collections for November totaled $383.2 million. That figure was $14.1 million above November 2012 collections, but $32.7 million below the official estimate.
Following is a summary of November revenues from several major tax categories and how those revenues compare with figures from a year ago and the official estimates:
Individual income tax: $125.1 million — 16.7 percent below last year and 20.2 percent below the estimate.
Corporate income tax: $1.2 million — 42.4 percent less than prior year and 77.7 percent below the estimate.
Sales tax: $162.6 million — 2 percent more than last year, but 3.2 percent below the estimate.
Gross production tax: $20.9 million — no money was received in November last year and the amount was 100.5 percent above the monthly estimate.
Motor vehicle taxes: $30.5 million — 83.9 percent above prior year and 74.3 percent above the estimate.
Other revenue: $42.9 million — 4.9 percent above last year and 26 percent below the estimate.