July’s General Collection Report showed an increase in collections for the first time since March, when the COVID-19 coronavirus was first reported in Florida.
In a memorandum published Wednesday, Senate President Bill Galvano said the report reflected a $2.5 million gain for the state. July’s report compliments the January, February and March reports, which combined totaled $202.4 million over estimates.
The increase also marks a turning point from April, May and June, when those reports noted significant losses because of shutdown orders and the economic consequences that followed.
“The road ahead will not be easy, but today’s news should give us every reason to be hopefully optimistic that our state will fully recover from this unprecedented pandemic, and we will return to the quality of life we all cherish,” Galvano wrote in the memo.
Galvano highlighted three revenue sources that recaptured some of their losses in July. Those areas included the Corporate Income Tax, Corporate Filing Fees and Highway Safety Fees. In all, the corporate Income Tax regained $134.7 million, the Corporate Filing Fees regained $34.6 million and the Highway Safety Fees regained $5.8 million.
Galvano attributed the rebound to the expiration of certain state orders that delayed payment and fees until July.
“Recoupment is likely to continue over the coming months,” he added.
Florida’s Legislative Budget Commission is expected to meet in the coming weeks to review and approve the state’s Long Range Financial Outlook. Galvano said notice of the LBC meeting will be provided at least a week before.
“This important document will provide a more holistic view of economic and budgetary factors over the next three years and will serve as an important tool for the Legislature when it reorganizes following the November election,” Galvano said.
In June, Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a coronavirus-impacted budget that underwent more than $1 billion in vetoes. In total, the state budget was slashed from $93.2 billion to $92.2 billion.
It was the biggest budget veto made by a Governor in the state’s history.