The new Kansas revenue numbers released Thursday afternoon were bad. Really bad.
They showed — here goes the broken record — that Gov. Sam Brownback’s costly income tax cuts are not producing the long-promised lode of new money that state government needs to provide basic services to Kansans.
Instead, Kansas is more than $42 million below expectations for the first three months of the 2016 fiscal year.
A large amount of the state’s reserves are disappearing, leading to the possibility of even more budget cuts in the weeks ahead.
How dismal was the month of September?
▪ Individual income taxes were $12 million below estimates, or almost 6 percent lower.
▪ Corporate income tax receipts were $7.5 million lower than expected, an 8 percent shortfall.
▪ Sales tax revenue was $12.5 million lower than predicted, or 6 percent off.
The sales tax number was especially negative.
Remember, Brownback helped push through a sales tax increase in the 2015 session. So for September, the state expected to collect $208 million — or $34.5 million more than September of 2014.
However, Kansas’ sales tax receipts were only $195.5 million.
None of these figures bodes well for the future.
The state has missed its revenue expectations in each of the first three months, and September was the worst so far.
If Brownback and other state leaders need to slice more spending in the future months, where will it come from?
Education leaders in Kansas should not be feeling terribly encouraged right now about getting all of the money once promised to them by Topeka.