FRANKFORT, Ky. — Kentucky’s General Fund receipts for May rose 56.7% compared to May of last year, an increase of $442.7 million. Total revenues for the month were $1,223.7 million, compared to $781.0 million during May 2020.
Last year’s receipts, in May 2020, occurred during the midst of the short-lived but pronounced pandemic-related recession. As a result, all major tax categories increased, with sales and income taxes having the largest increases.
The official budget estimate calls for revenues to grow 1.2% for the entire fiscal year. Receipts have now grown 14.3% for the first 11 months of fiscal year 2021. General Fund receipts stand at $11,610.6 million through May while the official enacted estimate is $11,704.0 million for the entire FY21.
Road Fund receipts for May totaled $148.9 million, a 55.4% increase compared to May 2020 levels. Year-to-date receipts have increased 9%. The sales tax continues to be a major engine of growth in the general fund.
Among the major accounts:
- Sales and use tax receipts increased 33.9% for the month and have grown 11.5% year-to-date.
- Corporation income and the Limited Liability Entity Tax (LLET) receipts were $44.9 million higher in May 2021 compared to last year, when the combined receipts were negative due to a surge in refunds. Collections in these accounts have increased 68.7% for the year. For the month, corporation declarations and net returns both increased by a combined $49.5 million while LLET receipts declined by $4.6 million.
- Individual income tax collections increased 76.5% in May due in part to the difference in the filing deadline from last year. Declarations and payments with returns were each up by more than $100 million. Withholding increased by 9.4% and has grown 5.7% year-to-date. Receipts have now increased 14.8% through the first 11 months of FY21.
- Property tax collections increased 83.6%, or $13.3 million, in May. All the major components of this tax increased in May and year-to-date receipts are up 8.8%, particularly tangible property tax revenues, including on motor vehicles. The FY21 growth rate in property taxes is the highest this century.
- Cigarette tax receipts fell 34.5% in May and are down 4.2% year-to-date. Cigarette tax receipts have been very volatile this fiscal year as high growth months are usually followed by sharp downturns in the following month.
- Coal severance tax receipts rose 12.7% in May to $4.7 million. Collections have declined 8.8% through the first 11 months of the fiscal year.
Road Fund receipts increased 55.4% in May 2021 with collections of $148.9 million, the second-highest month ever and second only to April 2021 receipts. May receipts were $53.1 million more than last May, resulting in large part from suppressed collections in May 2020 due to the pandemic.
Year-to-date collections have increased 9%. Among the accounts, motor fuel receipts have rebounded in the last two months, rising 42.3% in May, but down 0.7% for the year. Motor vehicle usage revenues increased 83.6% and are up 24.7% year-to-date. License and privilege receipts rose 36.3%. The official road fund revenue estimate calls for a 5.8% increase in revenues for the fiscal year.