The Legislative Fiscal Bureau (LFB) today projected state tax collections over the next two years would come in $755.1 million lower than what the agency expected just four months ago. Even with that dip, Wisconsin’s budget forecast still shows the state collecting about $6.9 billion more than anticipated by the end of this June.
From the Associated Press: “The projection from the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau estimates that taxes collected over the next two years will be down about $755 million, or about 1% less than the previous forecast made four months ago. Taking into account other short-term cost savings, the surplus shrank from $7.1 billion to nearly $6.9 billion.
“The new projection comes as lawmakers, Gov. Tony Evers and others are trying to strike a deal on a new, multibillion-dollar aid plan for local governments ahead of a vote Wednesday in the state Assembly.
“The new forecast also comes ahead of votes in coming weeks over tax cuts, funding for K-12 schools and the University of Wisconsin System and a host of other priorities and programs as lawmakers piece together the next two-year state budget.
“Republicans who control the Legislature have tried to temper excitement over the surplus. The Republican co-chairs of the Legislature’s budget-writing Joint Finance Committee said the latest downward estimate confirms that the Legislature is on the right track in creating a “cautious budget.”
“’The re-estimates reflect the current economic environment we are in and the reality we face over the next three years,’ Sen. Howard Marklein and Rep. Mark Born said in a joint statement. ‘In response to this reality, we will continue to craft a responsible budget that is made for Wisconsin.’
“No matter the spin, the surplus is jaw-dropping and more than the state has ever seen before.”