The Norman Transcript

Opinion

November 7, 2012

Revenue picture continues to improve

NORMAN — Oklahoma’s up and down economy has traditionally been one of the last to be hit with national economic problems, and the state is usually one of the last to emerge from a recession.

But the state’s economy appears to be recovering faster than many areas of the country as evidenced by higher tax collections on income, gross production and consumer good sales.

State Treasurer Ken Miller this week said the gross receipts to the treasury for October were up 9 percent and reflect the highest year-over-year increase in eight months.

The rebound of gross production taxes on oil and natural gas has certainly helped. The tax is down only about 7 percent after falling as much as 54 percent from previous years’ collections.

Personal income tax collections were up more than 20 percent. Sales taxes were up about 4 percent over the previous year. That bodes well for cities and counties that rely on the source for operations.

“In spite of the uncertainty surrounding the national elections and the impending fiscal cliff, Oklahoma’s economy is showing marked improvement,” Treasurer Miller said. “After leveling off for some six months, revenue collections have resumed their positive trajectory.”

Miller said the Business Conditions Index for the state also improved this past month. The survey’s leading economic indicator rose to 63.3 from 56.6 in September. Numbers above 50 mean growth is expected.

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