Fiscal Year 2020 Comes to a close
This week Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar released totals for fiscal 2020 state revenues, in addition to announcing monthly state revenues for August. Overall tax collection was down 3% from FY 2019.
General Revenue-related revenue for fiscal 2020 totaled $56.98 billion, down 1.5 percent from fiscal 2019.
- All Funds tax collections were $57.38 billion, down 3.4 percent from fiscal 2019.
- Sales tax revenue was $34.10 billion, up 0.2 percent over fiscal 2019.
- Motor vehicle sales and rental tax revenue was $4.8 billion, down 3.9 percent from fiscal 2019.
- Franchise tax revenue was $4.42 billion, up 4.8 percent over fiscal 2019.
- Oil production tax revenue was $3.23 billion, down 16.9 percent from fiscal 2019.
- Natural gas production tax revenue was $925 million, down 45.1 percent from fiscal 2019.
- All Funds revenue was $141.58 billion, up 10.7 percent over fiscal 2019, primarily due to substantial increases in federal funding for pandemic-related assistance.
“Yearly revenues were slightly ahead of our projections in the revised Certification Revenue Estimate (CRE) released in July,” Hegar said. “This was, in part, due to surprisingly strong July sales tax collections as Texans’ spending for home improvement projects increased while they spent more time at home both for teleworking and staycations, in lieu of leisure travel.”
The Economic Stabilization Fund (ESF) and State Highway Fund (SHF) both receive funding from oil and natural gas severance taxes. In November, the Comptroller’s office will deposit $1.13 billion in each of those funds, down from the $1.67 billion deposited in each fund in November 2019.
Hegar also said state sales tax revenue totaled $2.82 billion in August, 5.6 percent less than in August 2019.
Total sales tax revenue for the three months ending in August 2020 was down 2.7 percent compared to the same period a year ago. Sales tax is the largest source of state funding for the state budget, accounting for 59 percent of all tax collections. The effects of the economic slowdown and low oil prices also were evident in other sources of revenue in August 2020.
Texas Schools Open
In late July, Governor Abbott announced the protocols and safety procedures for opening Texas schools. This week, many ISDs across the state open their doors for in-person learning for Texas students. As Covid-19 numbers improve, some worry about the effects of opening schools and colleges. For many students being in school is a safer option, a safe haven from turbulent homes and a consistent place for meals. Additionally, virtual learning is especially challenging to students who do not have access to the necessary technology or broadband.
State leaders’ have allowed local health authorities the local discretion to close schools if COVID-19 is spreading through their buildings, but not in advance. Districts may also close campuses for up to five days to sanitize after a COVID-19 case is confirmed and will be funded for providing remote instruction.
Trump Bus Tour
This week, President Trump launched a Texas statewide bus tour in San Antonio. Lt. Governor Dan Patrick, Chairman of Trump’s 2020 campaign, kicked off the tour with strong support and reiterated certainty of a Trump victory in November. \
The bus tours next stops include: Granger, Bedford, Williamson County – hitting swing districts across the state.
Polling numbers for Trump have swung drastically during the past few months. Down ballot races will look to the top of the ticket to see impacts on local races, especially in 10 swing house seats in Texas that could determine the party leadership of the Texas House.
Don’t forget the election is just 59 days away.