TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNW ) – Kansas revenue officials say the state exceeded revenue estimates in December, by a little.
Kansas Department of Revenue numbers show tax collection in December were near $531 million, and that’s about $6 million, or about 1 percent more than expected.
But the state is still in the red by more than $340 million for the current year. Some incoming lawmakers are concerned and say it’s time to do a long-term fix.
“A long-term financial fix. That’s going to mean maybe trimming the budget in several ways, but also, tax increases,” says Democratic Representative Henry Helgerson, 83rd district.
Combined with higher than expected revenues in November, the state’s budget shortfall in the current fiscal year is now about $342 million.
The new numbers come after state officials drastically reduced the revenue forecasts in November.
The biggest gains in December were in individual income taxes, which came in $2.2 million, or nearly 5 percent, above the official estimates. They were nearly 7 percent higher than in December 2015.
Acting Revenue Secretary Sam Williams says he hopes the new numbers indicate improved purchasing power in the agriculture and oil and gas sectors.
“The state receipts are in line with revised projections,” says Williams in a public statement, “I am encouraged by that fact. I am hopeful that the sales tax increase year over year is an indication that purchasing power is returning to our agriculture and oil and gas sector.”