ATLANTA – Georgia’s tax collections were in the black in January for the seventh month in a row, the state Department of Revenue reported Friday.

This story also appeared in Capitol Beat News Service

The state brought in about $2.95 billion last month, up $423.5 million, or 16.7%, compared to January of last year.

January’s positive trend tracked closely with the first seven months of fiscal 2022, which saw a 17.9% increase in tax receipts over the first seven months of the previous fiscal year.

Georgia’s run of strong tax collections has come as the state emerges from the coronavirus pandemic, businesses reopen and customers step up buying those businesses’ goods and services.

Healthy finances are allowing Gov. Brian Kemp and the General Assembly to be generous with the state’s money.

The fiscal 2023 budget Kemp proposed last month includes a $2,000 raise for Georgia teachers, a one-time salary supplement of $2,000 for school administrators and support staff and a $1,000 supplement for school bus drivers, nurses, nutrition workers and part-time school employees. Law enforcement officers and other state employees are due to get $5,000 raises.

Individual income tax collections last month rose by 21% compared to January of last year, Net sales tax rose by 14.5%.

Usually volatile corporate income tax revenues rose by only 0.2% last month. But within that category, corporate tax refunds soared by 233.1%.

Gasoline tax collections continued to rise, as they have during the last year since Georgia motorists forced to stay home during the pandemic’s early days got back onto the highways. Motor fuel taxes were up 7% in January compered to the same month last year.

This story is available through a news partnership with Capitol Beat News Service, a project of the Georgia Press Educational Foundation.

Dave Williams/Capitol Beat

Dave Williams is bureau chief for Capitol Beat News Service, a service of the Georgia Press Education Foundation.