The state budget office sees more signs that Missouri is creeping back into positive economic territory. Budget Director Linda Luebbering says general revenue tax collections have come in eight-tenths of a percent higher than last August’s totals..Income tax collections were about four percent higher in August than in August, 2009 and sales tax collections were up three-tenths of a percent. Not much, but Luebbering says the increasing collections in the first two months of the fiscal year are encouraging, especially in the two categories of taxes that provide about 90% of the state’s general revenue.

The growth would be much bigger if the revenue department had not okayed almost 20 percent more in tax refunds than it approved in August of 2009. But Luebbering says that’s a reflection of how poor the economy was a year ago. She says the refunds do lower state revenue but they might constitute “a little bit of positive news.”

Although the total collections of income and sales taxes are up just a little bit in August, Luebbering says the trends are going the right way and are on target for meeting projections for the full year.

BP talks with Linda Luebbering 5:29 mp3