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Friday, November 11, 2016

NOTES FROM THE SENATE, NOVEMBER 11, 2016

OCTOBER REVENUES BOUNCE BACK

After a lethargic first quarter, state revenues headed in a positive direction in October showing an overall increase for the month of 8.6%, an increase of some $140.1 million on total revenues of $1.768 billion. The Individual Income Tax category returned to more traditional growth with a 10.1% increase for the month, an increase of $84.8 million. Within the category, Withholding payments were up at an encouraging rate, 10.9%, Income Tax Return Payments increased 7.9% and Refunds increased 13.9%.

Corporate Income taxes rebounded, growing $34.9 million mostly because Refunds were down $32.3 million. Net Sales Taxes were up 4.0% as net taxes continue to exceed gross Sales Tax Revenues as a percentage. Overall gross Sales Taxes were up only 2.9%, although that is pretty good.

Tobacco taxes were up for the month at 6.0%. Alcoholic Beverages were down 0.04%. Title Ad Valorem Taxes/Fees were up 7.1% or $5.6 million.

Motor Fuel Taxes totaled $143.3 million for the month, up $5.4 million or 3.9%. Highway Impact Fees were down slightly, $63,000, totaling $656,000 for the month. Hotel Motel Fees increased $732,000 for a total of $14.2 million for the month. DOT separate funds totaled $158.2 million.

YEAR-TO-DATE REVENUES IMPROVING TO 4.8% AFTER 4 MONTHS

After the first three months of FY 2017 showing slowing revenues, October proved to be an encouraging month, bringing up the YTD average at the one third of the year mark. Revenues have totaled $7.07 billion for the four months so far, an increase of $323.1 million or 4.8%

Individual Income Taxes show only a 3.0% increase YTD, an increase of $106.2 million. Corporate Income Taxes are up after 4 months 7.6%. Net Sales and Use Taxes are up some 4.0% for the 4 months, with gross Sales Tax increase showing only 1.6%.

Tobacco Taxes are up 1.7% and Alcoholic beverages are up YTD 2.6%. Title Ad Valorem Taxes/Fees have increased $40.4 million or 12.9% so far.

TRANSPORTATION FUNDS STILL COMING IN

Motor Fuel Taxes YTD total $588.6 million, an increase over last year of about one month or $71.2 million. Highway Impact Fees total $3.5 million or slightly up 15.9% and Hotel Motel fees show $58.7 million so far, an increase of $16.9 million. YTD, dedicated transportation funds total $650.8 million from the three sources.

GROWTH OUTSIDE OF DOT FUNDS IMPROVING

For October, revenue growth totaled 8.2%. Year-to-Date, revenue growth outside of HB 170 totals 3.5%. All inclusive, state revenue collections exceed the amount needed for the state budget by some $224.3 million. The 12 month trailing average through October shows Georgia's revenues growing, without HB 170 increases, 5.8% and including all funds, 8.2%.

SOUTHEAST STATES REVIEW

While we do not have all of the SE states reporting through October, of the ones we do have, Georgia continues to look pretty good.

Texas - minus 13.6% - As they continue to suffer through the oil industry challenges

Alabama - 2.1% - Positive but low growth

Louisiana - 8.6% - Reflects stabilizing of revenues from disastrous year in FY2016. October Revenues were $200m better than last year accounting for the percentage jump.

So, Georgia, while not growing as strongly as a year ago, picked back up in October and made the YTD numbers look more respectable. Georgia's economy continues to march along.

A VETERANS DAY MESSAGE FROM JACK HILL

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Revj_YFnE0g

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