State revenue collections stay on a roll, up 22.9% in October

Georgia continues to see tax collections climb, indicating a strong state economy.

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Georgia continues to see tax collections climb, indicating a strong state economy.

State tax collections continued to climb in October as Georgia’s economy remained hot.

Overall collections were up 22.9% in October and are 16.6% ahead of where they were this time last year, up $1.36 billion.

The new fiscal year began July 1. Georgia was coming off a fiscal year that ended June 30 with record collections, and the momentum hasn’t stopped.

In October, income tax collections were up 26.9% and gross sales tax collections were 16.4% ahead of October 2020. Most state revenue comes from income and sales taxes, and growth in those categories is typically seen as a sign of a strong economy.

However, budget officials have been predicting an eventual slowdown in collections if inflation and supply problems don’t abate.

The taxes the state collects help it educate 2 million children, provide health care to more than 2 million Georgians, manage and improve parks, investigate crimes and incarcerate criminals, and regulate insurance firms, utilities and dozens of professions. The state issues driver’s licenses and helps pay for nursing home care for the elderly.

The state is a major provider of treatment for mental health and drug addiction, and it helps fund public health programs that are fighting the pandemic. Besides paying salaries, it helps make sure that hundreds of thousands of former teachers, university staffers and state employees receive pensions and health care.