MADISON, Wis. — Wisconsin tax collections for the fiscal year that ended June 30, more than four months into the coronavirus pandemic, were nearly on par with projections made before the COVID-19 outbreak.
The state Department of Revenue announced Monday that tax collections were down $112.6 million, or 0.6%, compared with projections made before the pandemic hit, a bit of good budget news as the state braces for shortfalls due to the recession fueled by business closures and double-digit unemployment.
The $17.5 billion in taxes collected was 1.1% higher than what was brought in the previous year.
Co-chairs of the Legislature's budget committee urged caution, saying the true impact of COVID-19 won't be felt until next year. State Sen. Alberta Darling and state Rep. John Nygren, both Republicans, said the next budget will be "challenging," but said because of budget reserves that reach nearly $762 million the state will be able to deal with the problem without raising taxes.
Gov. Tony Evers has already ordered state agencies to cut $320 million from their current budgets. He will submit a new two-year state budget early next year for the Legislature to consider. That plan will be voted on likely in the summer of 2021 and cover July 2021 through June 2023.