Georgia’s April revenue figures suggest decent income growth but very sluggish retail sales statewide

The pdf of Georgia’s state revenues for April can be found here.

The headline number of a 2.6% year-over-year increase is weak. That’s barely more than the increase needed to make up for core inflation. Personal income tax revenue was up 8.2% over last April, which might suggest solid income growth — or it might simply be a result of Georgians waiting longer to file their taxes.

April seems to be a particularly volatile month for state revenues because of the tax deadline and delays in past years in processing payments.

Gross sales and use taxes grew by only 1.9% — an anemic number at this point in an already slow and sluggish recovery. Motor fuel taxes are not a particularly significant revenue stream for the state compared to personal income taxes or sales taxes, but it’s interesting that those fuel tax collections fell by 11% year-over-year for April. That suggests that Georgians might be driving less in the face of higher gas prices — that’s a surefire way to slow down the overall economy.

All in all, the Georgia Dept. of Revenue brought in $1.376 billion in April compared to $1.341 billion last April. That’s off steeply from the $1.761 billion in revenue in April 2008.