Carcieri upbeat on state revenue

While we'll have to wait to see if the state deficit is larger than the Carcieri administration believes, the governor feels pretty good about the revenue side of the equation right now. Here's an excerpt from a Q+A that I have with the governor in this week's Phoenix:

Is the state doing enough t focus on raising revenue?
Yeah. It’s not a revenue issue. That’s what I call political speak for raise taxes. Our personal income tax receipts last year, we reported up seven percent, which is very good. They’re actually up over 10, maybe even close to 12, because we have the historic tax credit program. Most of that money goes to offset personal income taxes for people that can use that credit. If you factor out the year-to-year difference in the credits we process, the actual underlying tax revenues were up, as I said, between 10 and 12 percent. That’s terrific.
I mean, in an inflation environment that’s two-and-a-half [percent], that says that we’re raising incomes and we’re generating jobs. And we haven’t been increasing taxes. We’ve been reducing taxes — the flat tax — and that began to kick in. So to me there’s a good story on the revenue side. And the corporate income tax receipts were up. The only area where the receipts have been flat or down [is] the sales tax, and the one last year that was down was the VLT revenues, because of all the changes and the new building going up at now-Twin River, then Lincoln Park. So, no, I don’t think we can raise taxes.

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