From PA Chamber of Business & Industry
With less than one month remaining in the state’s 2020-21 Fiscal Year and negotiations on the upcoming year’s budget beginning in earnest, the Commonwealth continues a strong fiscal showing. May’s revenue collections totaled $3.9 billion – representing a staggering 65.4 percent increase over official estimates.
Last month, the state’s Independent Fiscal Office forecasted the Commonwealth would finish the fiscal year with a $3.16 billion revenue surplus. The state is on track to realize that number with revenue collections to date totaling $36.6 billion, or $2.9 billion over estimates.
The higher than anticipated revenues come as welcome news for state government officials. With the fiscal year nearing an end, June historically marks a period of intense negotiations over the upcoming year’s state budget. Adding another dynamic to budgetary discussions is the influx of more than $7 billion in federal stimulus aid.
While strong revenues help to alleviate pressures on the General Fund brought forth by the COVID-19 pandemic, there are still several areas of disagreement between the Wolf administration and Republican majorities in the General Assembly – including the final spend number and the allocation of the stimulus dollars.
Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have expressed interest and optimism in finalizing the 2021-22 budget plan well ahead of the June 30 constitutional deadline.