Gasoline taxes propping up otherwise sluggish Georgia state tax revenues in January

Georgia tax collections rose last month compared to January of last year, the state Department of Revenue reported Monday.

But that 2.1% increase only occurred because the state sales tax on gasoline was in effect last month but was not being collected during the same month a year ago.

Both individual and corporate income taxes fell in January. Individual income taxes declined slightly – by 0.3% – while corporate income tax revenue plummeted by 43.3%.

Net sales taxes rose slightly last month – by 0.2% – compared to January of last year.

For the first seven months of the current fiscal year, state tax receipts increased by 1.7% over the same period during fiscal 2023. However, after subtracting taxes on gasoline and other fuels from the mix, revenues from last July through last month were down 2.7%.

While tax collections have been sluggish for months, Gov. Brian Kemp and legislative leaders haven’t been overly concerned because Georgia has built up a $16 billion budget surplus during the last three years. That’s allowed the governor to propose major spending increases in both the fiscal 2024 midyear budget and the fiscal 2025 spending plan.