State Revenues Way Above Projections Early On

PRESS RELEASE from the State of Tennessee, Sept. 14, 2015:

NASHVILLE – Tennessee revenue collections exceeded budgeted estimates for the first month of the state’s fiscal year. Finance and Administration Commissioner Larry Martin today reported that overall August revenues were $898.4 million, which is $28.5 million above August 2014 collections. The growth rate for August was 3.27%.

“Sales tax collections reflecting July’s consumer activity grew 8.26% over the same time period one year ago, while corporate tax collections fell short of budgeted estimates by $26.6 million,” Martin said. “The shortfall in corporate taxes can be attributed mostly to refunds of pre-paid taxes. All other taxes, taken as a group, had a negative growth of 0.38% but were $6.0 million above the budgeted estimate for August.

“While we are encouraged by the August revenue numbers, we do have some concerns about global economic uncertainty, and what effect we might see in Tennessee from further decline in the European and Asian markets. It’s important for us to maintain close controls on state spending and to carefully monitor our revenue trends.”

On an accrual basis, August is the first month in the 2015-2016 fiscal year.

August collections were $19.1 million more than the budgeted estimate. The general fund was over collected by $10.6 million and the four other funds that share in state tax collections were over collected by $8.5 million.

Sales tax collections were $39.7 million more than the estimate for August. The August growth rate was positive 8.26%.

Franchise and excise taxes combined were $26.6 million below the budgeted estimate of $38.4 million, and the growth rate was negative 65.78%. Typically, August is a very small collection month for F&E taxes.

Gasoline and motor fuel collections increased by 5.95% from August of 2014, and were $4.3 million above the budgeted estimate of $70.3 million.

Inheritance tax collections were $0.2 million below the budgeted estimate.

Privilege tax collections were $4.2 million more than the budgeted estimate of $21.1 million

Business tax collections were $1.0 million below the August estimate.

Tobacco tax collections for the month were under collected by $0.1 million.

All other taxes were under collected by a net of $1.2 million.

The budgeted revenue estimates for 2015-2016 are based on the State Funding Board’s consensus recommendation of December 16, 2014 and adopted by the first session of the 109th General Assembly in April 2015. Also incorporated in the estimates are any changes in revenue enacted during the 2015 session of the General Assembly. These estimates are available on the state’s website at

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