Kansas tax revenue, April 2021

For April 2021, Kansas tax revenue was 69.9 percent greater than April 2020. Over the ten months of the current fiscal year, revenue is 19.5 percent higher than at the same point of the previous year. There are caveats to consider.

Tax reports from the State of Kansas for April 2021 show tax revenues rising from the previous month, and also higher than the same month the prior year. Comparisons to April 2020 must be considered in that the tax deadline for 2020 was changed from April to July. That also shifted a large amount of revenue from fiscal year 2020 to 2021. The tax deadline for 2021 was changed from April to May, but so far this hasn’t seemed to have a large effect on the timing of income tax revenue.

Also, after one year of pandemic, we know how it affected tax collections.

When reporting on Kansas tax collections, the comparison is usually made to the estimated collections. Those estimates were revised in April 2020 based on economic conditions affected by the response to the pandemic. To get a feel for the effects of the response to the pandemic, it is best to compare to the same month the prior year.

(The estimated revenue figures are still important because the state budget is based on them. If the actual revenue is much below the estimated revenue, there may not be enough income to pay expenses.)

For April 2021, individual income tax collections were $487.2 million, up by 72.5 percent from the prior April (keep in mind the timing issues explained above). Retail sales tax collections rose by 28.5 percent to $236.6 million over the year. Total tax collections were $982.4 million, up 69.9 percent from the same month the prior year. A nearby table summarizes.

For fiscal year 2021, which started on July 1, 2020, total tax collections are up by 19.6 percent over the same period of the previous fiscal year. A large reason for this is the change in tax deadlines from April to July, shifting much revenue from fiscal year 2020 to fiscal year 2021. That hasn’t always been explained, as I show in In Kansas, explanations for tax collections may vary.

As can be seen in a nearby table, tax revenue for fiscal year 2021 is $1,114.0 million greater than at the same time in the previous fiscal year. Of this, about $395 million is due to the increase in individual income tax revenue. (Click tables and charts for larger versions.)

One year of pandemic

The response to the pandemic started in March 2020. We have 12 months of pandemic-affected tax collection data. How does this period compare with the same period one year prior? This is an important question.

A nearby table shows tax collections for two periods of twelve months ending in March 2020 and March 2021. We can easily see the effect of shifting the tax due date from April 2020 to July 2020. Over each period, however, tax collections were nearly the same. The difference of $21.9 million is 0.28 percent. That is the effect of the pandemic on Kansas tax collections for one year.

I’ve also prepared a similar table, but for years ending in April. For the year ending in April 2021, tax revenue is $993.1 (13.8 percent) greater than the same period one year prior. But we must remember that the current period contains two income tax deadlines for two tax years. In her press release on the April collections, Kansas Governor Laura Kelly noted the large increase (69.9 percent) over last April: “This increase is due, in part, to businesses having opened back up compared to the same month last year.” While true, this is quite an understatement. The change in income tax deadlines had a far larger effect, perhaps four times as large.

My report on tax revenue for April details some changes made by the estimating group.

My interactive visualization of Kansas tax revenue has been updated with this data. Click here to use it.

The governor’s press release for this data is at Governor Laura Kelly Announces April Tax Receipts.

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