State tax revenue in October better than expected

Titus Wu
The Topeka Capital-Journal
Tax revenue numbers for Kansas are still looking positive as of last month.

While the coronavirus pandemic delayed the tax filing deadline, Kansas is still seeing positive signs in its revenue numbers from the past month.

October's total tax collection was about $596.6 million, which is $62.6 million more than estimated. Compared to the same month last year, it was a 7.9% increase.

“While the positive revenue trends are encouraging, the future of this revenue growth will be tied to the support we get from Washington and to every Kansas community using the tools we know work to slow the spread of COVID-19," said Gov. Laura Kelly in a statement that urged Congress to pass an economic relief bill.

Nearly half of revenue last month came from individual income tax, which amounted to $283.6 million, which is 9.1% more than expected. Corporate income tax contributed $26.1 million, 74% more than estimated. The latter income tax saw a slight decrease year over year, however.

Retail sales tax was the second biggest revenue contributor, with $211 million, up $13 million from projections.

Compensating use sales tax, which is paid on online transactions, continued to see the most positive trends, thanks in part to people stuck at home due to the pandemic. About $50 million was collected, 30% more than estimated and 21.6% more than in the previous October.

The state is still cautious despite the numbers.

"This revenue growth, while unmistakably positive, has to continuously be assessed against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic and the uncertainty it causes for the economy going into the winter months," Kansas Department of Revenue Secretary Mark Burghart said in a statement.