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TN State Revenue Exceeds Expectations Again

Posted on Friday, September 18, 2020 at 2:28 pm

Tennessee revenues were more than the budgeted estimates for the first month of the state’s fiscal year. Finance and Administration Commissioner Butch Eley today reported that August revenues were $1.2 billion, which is $22 million more than August 2019, and $115.1 million more than the budgeted estimates. The growth rate for all taxes in August was 1.94 per-cent.

“Tennessee revenues exceeded expectations for the month and exhibited modest gains compared to August 2019,” Eley said. “Consumer activity for the month of July, reflected in August’s sales tax receipts, continued to outperform expectations as federal stimulus resources remained a large part of the state’s strong performance. While tax receipts from building material suppliers, food stores, furniture and home appliance retailers have increased significantly compared to last year; apparel stores, many small retailers, restaurants and bars continue to experience losses due to decreased sales activity.

“State corporate taxes, which are the franchise and excise taxes, decreased compared to last year; however, they exceeded estimates for the month. All other taxes were closely aligned with our August estimates.

“While we are pleased with the positive start to the 2020-2021 fiscal year, we will remain cautiously optimistic and continue to monitor economic activity and revenue trends to ensure fiscal stability.”

On an accrual basis, August is the first month in the 2020-2021 fiscal year.

General fund revenues were $108.6 million more than the August estimate. The four other funds that share in state tax revenues were $6.5 million more than the estimates.

Sales tax revenues were $103 million more than the estimate for August. The August growth rate was 3.83 percent.

Franchise and excise taxes combined were $11.5 million more than the budgeted estimate of $31 million, but growth was negative 3.75 percent compared to August 2019.Gasoline and motor fuel revenues decreased by 7.75 percent from August of 2019 and were $2.3 million less than the budgeted estimate of $103.4 million.

Business tax revenues were $1 million less than the Au-gust estimate of $9 million.

Tobacco tax revenues for the month were less than budgeted estimates by $1 million.

Privilege tax revenues for August were $2 million more than the estimate.

Motor vehicle registration revenues were $4 million more than the August estimate of $26.4 million.

All other tax revenues were less than budgeted estimates by a net of $1.1 million.

The budgeted revenue estimates for 2020-2021 are based on the State Funding Board’s consensus recommendation of November 26, 2019 and adopted by the second session of the 111th General Assembly in June 2020. Also incorporated in the estimates are any changes in revenue enacted during the 2020 session of the General Assembly.