Kentucky’s General Fund revenue saw a sharp decline last month. Budget Director Jane Driskell says collections fell 5.2%, costing the state nearly $30 million. Coal severance tax revenue had the largest loss, with 24. 5%. Both individual income tax and cigarette tax revenue dropped about 14%. Driskell says 41% increases in corporate income tax and property tax collections failed to offset the losses.
Tennessee has collected $190 million dollars more than budgeted so far this fiscal year. Finance and administration officials say April collections were 9.6 percent over those in April a year ago. Sales tax collections for April recorded their 25th straight month of growth.
Illinois lawmakers have agreed on how much money will be available for next year's budget. The state Senate joined the House today in approving a revenue estimate of $33.7 billion. The figure amounts to an upper limit for the fiscal year starting July 1. But much of the money will go to paying pensions and old bills, leaving less for day-to-day government services. Senate Republican Leader Christine Radogno says creating a budget will be the most difficult challenge for legislators.
Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear has appointed a 23-member ‘blue ribbon commission’ to study the state's tax system and propose a reform plan. The commission will be headed by Lt. Governor Jerry Abramson and will review the state's current tax system and make recommendations by November 15th. Beshear says the state needs to ensure it has a tax system that produces adequate revenue to meet Kentuckians’ needs. He also says tax revenue has been growing at a rate of 70 to 75 percent of the economy's growth and state government has cut spending by $1.3 billion.