State Tax Revenues Up 13 Percent, Oklahoma Still Not Recovered

  • Joe Wertz

Gross revenue collections for November were 13.2 percent higher than last year and have grown for 21 months straight, State Treasurer Ken Miller said Thursday.

Gross collections reflect all revenues collected by the Oklahoma Tax Commission. Some of the money is earmarked for specific funds, while some collections go to cities and counties. The remainder goes into the general revenue fund to fund state government.

The Oklahoman’s Michael McNutt on the numbers:

In the past 12 months, gross revenue totals $10.6 billion. That is $907.08 million, or 9.4 percent higher, than the 12-month period ending in November 2010.

“The last time 12-month receipts were higher than today was two-and-a-half years ago, in May 2009, when collections stood at $10.77 billion,” Miller said. “Since we hit the depths of the recession in February 2010, almost two-thirds of the lost revenue has been recovered.”

The Tulsa World’s Barbara Hoberock on a few of the specifics:

Motor vehicle taxes produced $49.1 million, up 12.6 percent.

Other collections, consisting of about 60 sources including taxes on fuel, tobacco, horse race gambling and alcohol, generated $115.6 million, or 32.6 percent above last November.

The revenue collections don’t include Black Friday shopping, but Miller predicted strong December numbers on sales tax collections.

Miller believes Oklahoma has weathered the worst of its budget problems, but said the lack of one-time funds and a tab for economic incentives suspended in tight budget years will challenge lawmakers building the FY 2013 budget.

“We are not recovered,” Miller said, according to the World. “We are not where we need to be.”