The state is collecting more tax revenue than it did a year ago, but barely. In the month of August, net state tax revenue was just 1.3 percent above the same month a year ago.
“August was fairly flat. July was fairly flat and June was also,” says Jeff Robinson of the Legislative Services Agency. “When you talk about a trend in (state tax) receipts, it’s still positive. it’s still growing, but it begins to be something that you’ve got to start looking at for the long term. If that’s the path we’re taking, we’re not going to get significant growth like we have the last couple of years.”
Over the past two months the State of Iowa collected $5 million more in personal incomes taxes compared to July and August of last year.
“The withholding portion of our income tax did grow in August and that’s a good sign,” Robinson says.
A three-member panel of financial experts has predicted sales and use tax payments to the state will grow by five percent during this fiscal year, but in August, sales and use taxes were up just 1.6 percent.
“One month’s not good,” Robinson says. “We’ll have to see next month to see if that continues.”
The state is expected to collect more than $6.7 billion in taxes during the current fiscal year, which started July 1st. In the past two months, the state has collected just over a billion dollars in taxes.