CA State Revenues Down Over 10 Percent

State Controller John Chiang announced today that there is more bad news for the Golden State: Revenues are down over 10 percent, or $538 million, from projections. Steven E.F. Brown for the San Francisco Business Times wrote the following:

State Controller John Chiang said California’s revenue was 10.3 percent, or $538.8 million, below budget projections in July.

July was the first month of the Golden State’s new fiscal year, and the tax take was lower in many areas. Only personal income taxes were higher than budget estimates — they came in 2.9 percent, or $89 million, over estimates.

Corporate taxes were 19.3 percent, or $69.5 million below estimates while sales taxes and use taxes were 12.5 percent, or $139.4 million worse than guesses made in the most recent budget.

Both corporate taxes and also sales and use taxes were below their level in July 2010, too, though overall general fund revenue was up $39.9 million, or 0.9 percent, in July 2011 over a year earlier.

California’s budget is a series of guesses about revenue and spending for the year running July 1 through June 30. The controller keeps track of cash levels — how much money the treasury actually has.

Chiang’s office blamed the acrimonious debt-ceiling debate for creating “a great deal of uncertainty for state and local governments, the bond markets, banks and businesses, and the economy.”

In his summary of the situation, Chiang said consumer spending has been dropping, but no one’s sure whether it’s for “a genuine slowdown” or because of logistical problems from natural disasters like this year’s earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

“This is cause for concern, but not panic,” he said.

 

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