Taxation

Quarterly tax collections

Quarterly tax collections

Tax collections by state and local governments fell by about one percent during calendar year 2020 when compared to the year before. Tax collection data from the United States Census Bureau shows state and local government tax collections falling only slightly during 2020, despite the effects of the pandemic. (more…)
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Kansas tax revenue, March 2021

Kansas tax revenue, March 2021

For March 2021, Kansas tax revenue was 12.7 percent greater than March 2020. Over the nine months of the current fiscal year, revenue is 14.0 percent higher than at the same point of the previous year. (more…)
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Kansas tax revenue, February 2021

Kansas tax revenue, February 2021

For February 2021, Kansas tax revenue was 1.7 percent greater than February 2020. Over the eight months of the current fiscal year, revenue is 14.2 percent higher than at the same point of the previous year. Tax reports from the State of Kansas for February 2021 show tax revenues falling from the previous month, but higher than the same month the prior year, despite the effects of the response to the pandemic. The fall from January is characteristic of the seasonal pattern. When reporting on Kansas tax collections, the comparison is usually made to the estimated collections. Those estimates were…
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Say no to special tax treatment, again

Say no to special tax treatment, again

In Kansas, a company seeks to avoid paying property taxes, again. In a bill presented in the Kansas Legislature, the owner of health clubs seeks to avoid paying property taxes. The same company and its owner have tried this before. In 2014, I explained how granting this exemption was a bad idea. What has changed since then? This exemption is still a bad idea for reasons of public policy. Additionally, Brandon Steven, the owner of the health clubs, plead guilty to a gambling charge and forfeited one million dollars in earnings. The companies also owe a lot of the tax…
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Kansas tax revenue, January 2021

Kansas tax revenue, January 2021

For January 2021, total Kansas tax revenue was 9.7 percent greater than January 2020. Over the seven months of the current fiscal year, tax revenue is 15.5 percent higher than at the same point of the previous fiscal year. (more…)
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Wichita property tax rate: Up

Wichita property tax rate: Up

The City of Wichita property tax mill levy rose slightly for 2020. In 1994 the City of Wichita mill levy rate -- the rate at which real and personal property is taxed -- was 31.290. In 2020 it was 32.749, based on the Sedgwick County Clerk. That's an increase of 1.459 mills, or 4.66 percent, since 1994. (These are for taxes levied by the City of Wichita only, and do not include any overlapping jurisdictions.) (more…)
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Kansas tax revenue, December 2020

Kansas tax revenue, December 2020

For December 2020, total Kansas tax revenue was 1.8 percent greater than last December 2019. Over the six months of the current fiscal year, tax revenue is 16.6 percent higher than at the same point of the previous fiscal year. (more…)
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Kansas tax revenue, November 2020

Kansas tax revenue, November 2020

For November 2020, total Kansas tax revenue was 4.3 percent greater than last November. Over the five months of the current fiscal year, tax revenue rose by 20.6 percent. Tax reports from the State of Kansas for November 2020 show tax revenues falling from the previous month, but higher than the same month last year, despite the effects of the response to the pandemic. When reporting on Kansas tax collections, the comparison is usually made to the estimated collections. Those estimates were revised in April based on economic conditions affected by the response to the pandemic. To get a feel…
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Kansas tax revenue, October 2020

Kansas tax revenue, October 2020

For October 2020, total Kansas tax revenue was 7.9 percent greater than last October. Over the four months of the current fiscal year, tax revenue rose by 24.4 percent. Tax reports from the State of Kansas for October 2020 show tax revenues falling from the previous month, but higher than the same month last year, despite the effects of the response to the pandemic. When reporting on Kansas tax collections, the comparison is usually made to the estimated collections. Those estimates were revised in April based on economic conditions affected by the response to the pandemic. To get a feel…
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Kansas tax revenue, September 2020

Kansas tax revenue, September 2020

For September 2020, total Kansas tax revenue fell by 2.0 percent from last September. Over the three months of the current fiscal year, tax revenue rose by 29.7 percent. Tax reports from the State of Kansas for September 2020 show tax revenues falling from the previous month, and still recovering from the effects of the response to the pandemic. When reporting on Kansas tax collections, the comparison is usually made to the estimated collections. Those estimates were revised in April based on economic conditions affected by the response to the pandemic. To get a feel for the effects of the…
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In Kansas, explanations for tax collections may vary

In Kansas, explanations for tax collections may vary

Kansas officials have explanations for low tax collections, but don't mention the same contributing factor when touting high collections. In March, Kansas Governor Laura Kelly, in response to the COVID-10 pandemic, delayed the due date for Kansans to file and pay income taxes from April 15, 2020 to July 15, 2020. [1. Executive order 20-13. Available at https://governor.kansas.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/EO-20-13-Executed.pdf.] This change was bound to affect state tax collections for April, and it did. When presenting tax collections for the month of April 2020, the Department of Revenue explained: "As predicted, the State of Kansas saw a decrease in total tax collections…
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Deficit shrank in August, but …

Deficit shrank in August, but …

The top takeaway of the Congressional Budget Office Monthly Budget Review for August 2020 is that the deficit for the month is smaller than last August. But there are details. Sometimes it pays to read the fine print. Otherwise, you may receive a false impression. Here is the monthly budget review for August 2020, which is the eleventh month of fiscal year 2020: The federal budget deficit in August 2020 was $198 billion, CBO estimates, $3 billion less than the deficit in August of last year. However, that comparison is distorted by shifts in the timing of certain payments in…
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Kansas general fund spending and receipts

Kansas general fund spending and receipts

The Kansas budget is volatile, with rising spending and a large deficit. Figures from Kansas financial reports show that state spending has risen. Based on that and shifts in revenue flows, deficits are large. The following tables and charts show actual data through fiscal year 2019. Figures for 2020 are revised estimates, and for 2021, the figures are from the approved budget. The primary source of data is Kansas Comparison Report: The FY 2021 Governor’s Budget Report with Legislative Authorizations. [2. Kansas Division of the Budget, Kansas Comparison Reports. Available at https://budget.kansas.gov/comparison-reports/.] The revised estimate of receipts is $826.9 million…
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Kansas tax revenue, August 2020

Kansas tax revenue, August 2020

For August 2020, total Kansas tax revenue fell by 43 percent from July, reflecting the tax deadline postponement from April to July. Tax reports from the State of Kansas for August 2020 show tax revenues recovering from the effects of the response to the pandemic. When reporting on Kansas tax collections, the comparison is usually made to the estimated collections. Those estimates were revised in April 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…
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Wichita property tax on commercial property: High

Wichita property tax on commercial property: High

An ongoing study reports that property taxes on commercial and industrial property in Wichita are high. In particular, taxes on commercial property in Wichita are among the highest in the nation. The study is produced by Lincoln Institute of Land Policy and Minnesota Center for Fiscal Excellence. It's titled "50 State Property Tax Comparison Study" and may be read here. It uses a variety of residential, apartment, commercial, and industrial property scenarios to analyze the nature of property taxation across the country. I've gathered data from selected tables for Wichita. In Kansas, residential property is assessed at 11.5 percent of…
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Kansas tax revenue, July 2020

Kansas tax revenue, July 2020

For July 2020, total Kansas tax revenue rose by 97.7 percent from last July, reflecting the tax deadline postponement from April. Tax reports from the State of Kansas for July 2020 reveal some of the effects of the response to the pandemic on state finances. When reporting on Kansas tax collections, the comparison is usually made to the estimated collections. Those estimates were revised in April 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…
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Federal revenue and outlays

Federal revenue and outlays

An interactive visualization of federal government revenue and spending from 1962 to the present. This data comes from the Congressional Budget Office Budget and Economic Data page. While CBO often makes projections of the future and those projections may be controversial, the data in this visualization is historical. CBO presents this data in current dollars and as a percent of gross domestic product, or GDP. When current dollars are adjusted to account for inflation, the result is "real dollars." In this visualization, I have used the CPI to convert current dollars to the value of dollars in 2019. CBO also…
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Century II maintenance to be considered

Century II maintenance to be considered

The Wichita city council will consider spending $250,000 on maintenance for Century II. There are questions regarding the source of funding. This week the Wichita City Council will consider spending $250,000 on maintenance items for Century II and the attached expo hall. The items are mostly ventilation, air conditioning, and plumbing. [1. The bonding resolution, number 20-192, states: "Facility repairs and improvements to Century II (District I). Including, but not be limited to, prioritized critical building system improvements, renovation and repairs as well as replacement of Expo Hall HVAC Roof-Top Unit systems and Century II circulation pumps throughout the facility…
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Kansas tax revenue, June 2020

Kansas tax revenue, June 2020

For June 2020, total Kansas tax revenue fell by 4.8 percent from last June. For the just-completed fiscal year 2020, revenue was down by 5.7 percent from the previous year. Tax reports from the State of Kansas for June 2020 reveal some of the effects of the response to the pandemic on state finances. When reporting on Kansas tax collections, the comparison is usually made to the estimated collections. Those estimates were revised in April 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…
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