New numbers indicate more Missourians are earning paychecks and more of them are spending more money.
The state budget office reviews tax collections each month, paying special attention to income tax collections because those taxes provide about 65 percent of the general fund that pays the bills for most state agencies. And the income tax numbers have been up every month this year. They’re up 3.4-percent for the year. And sales taxes have followed that trend…up almost five percent for the year.
State budget director Linda Luebbering says collections from sales and income taxes total more than seven-billion dollars through the first eleven months of the fiscal year. But corporate income tax is down almost nine percent, more than expected. She says it’s concerning although most of it is tied to a change in federal corporate tax policy.
And external factors have to be considered. “You’ve got to be extremely cautious because of what you hear about the national and international economy,” she says.
Luebbering says, though, that the governor might want to be cautious when he takes action on the budget bills within the next couple of weeks or so.