WPR News
12:21 pm
Mon December 29, 2003

State Revenue Continues to Outpace Predictions

Cheyenne, Wy – State revenue so far this fiscal year is coming in well ahead of the predicted pace in just about every area.
That's according to the latest Consensus Revenue Estimating Group report released Monday.
State economists say tax, investment and fee income from July through November totaled over 219 million dollars -- or 25-point-6 percent more than was forecast in October.
One reason is healthy minerals prices -- and especially strong prices for natural gas.
State economists had precicted that Wyoming would earn 15-point-6 million from severance taxes on natural gas over the five-month period. The actual amount was 23-point-2 million -- nearly 49 percent higher than anticipated.
The trend promises to continue. State economist Jim Robinson says natural gas prices have been climbing this month as winter settles in around the nation.
Earnings have been even stronger on securities and other investment of the Permanent Wyoming Mineral Trust Fund. The Consensus Revenue Estimating Group predicted the state would earn about 20 million on investment of the fund. The actual figure was nearly 47 million -- well over 100 percent more.
Sales and use taxes were up ten percent from the predicted amount.
Federal mineral royalties for September, October and November were down 11.6 percent from the expected amount.