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A good start to fiscal year
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Individual income taxes were up 10.5 percent or $67 million and sales and use taxes were up 9.3 percent or $44 million. Gasoline sales taxes increased by 6.7 percent.

Corporate income tax bucked the August trend from last year rising 10.5 percent or $6 million.

All in all, August revenues are encouraging. Other states are having first of the year revenue problems including Florida and North Carolina, so by any measurement available, Georgia continues to do well.

Year to date numbers positive
At the end of the first two months of the fiscal year, revenues are showing encouraging trends. For the year to date (YTD) through August, collections increased 8.2 percent or $201 million compared to YTD August 2006.

Individual income taxes led the way with an 8.1 percent increase or $100 million increase over the same period last year. Sales taxes had a net increase of $114 million or 12.3 percent net (not allowing for gasoline taxes). Corporate income taxes had a strong 2 months growing by $47 million YTD August 2006.

Income tax as a percent of the total taxes collected rose to 50.4 percent from 48.6 percent in July. Sales and use taxes accounted for 39.2 percent of the total taxes collected and corporate taxes about 1.7 percent.

Inside the sales tax numbers
Sales taxes were actually negative at 1.3 percent for the month. Only a reduction in the distribution to local governments of 14.7 percent caused the total to rise to 9.3 percent.

Even though over the two months so far there is a 2.6 percent increase over all, the picture only looks better than a year ago because the local distribution is down 6.3 percent or $53 million for the two months.

There are three major categories within sales and use tax. The first is food, which was up 5.4 percent (this category is only collected and distributed to local governments.) The next highest category is automotive which was down 7.6 percent compared to 2006 August YTD. General merchandise, the third major category, was only 1.3 percent. All of the remaining categories besides utilities were down compared to last year.

All other categories except for two showed positive gains.  The first declining category is the estate tax. Since federal law is continuing to phase out this credit and since Georgia is linked to the federal rate, this decline was expected.

Taxes on tobacco products have not been impacted by new regulations, but still declined 7 percent through YTD August 2007.

Total motor fuel taxes gained $7 million, yet excise taxes (by the gallon) were down slightly.

Useful Web sites
Visit the Legislature’s Home Page at
To view the FY2008 budget in its entirety:  - Tab - Budget Reports

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