The numbers are in and…

Revenue Estimating Conference members, from left to right, David Underwood, Richard Oshlo and Holly Lyons

Revenue Estimating Conference members, from left to right, David Underwood, Richard Oshlo and Holly Lyons

The three-member State Revenue Estimating Council met early this afternoon. Their estimate of state tax collections in fiscal year 2010 was reduced by about $900,000.   (Fiscal year 2010 began July 1, 2009 and concludes June 30, 2010.)  Their estimate of state tax collections in fiscal year 2011 increased by over $30 million.  (For you insiders, it’s up $33.1 million from the December, 2009 estimate.)  Here’s a pdf if you like to read lots of numbers.

“I hope we’re wrong, but we wanted to err on the conservative side,” Legislative Services Agency director Holly Lyons said to conclude the meeting.

These estimates are used by lawmakers to build the state budget plan.  UPDATE: Lawmakers and the governor have issued statements.  Read them below, in the order they were received by yours truly.

(DES MOINES)—Today House Republican Leader Kraig Paulsen (R-Hiawatha) released the following statement on the Revenue Estimating Conference recent report on Iowa’s revenue:

“The Legislature cannot use this slight increase in revenue as an excuse to spend more taxpayer money.  As we’ve learned over the past three years, excessive spending for short term goals is not the answer.

“House Republicans offered $290 million in savings this session and over $600 million in savings in the last two sessions.  Spending less, saving more and enacting reasonable savings is the path House Republicans prefer.”

tDes Moines, IA — Governor Chet Culver issued the following statement after the March meeting of the Revenue Estimating Conference. The Conference, which meets quarterly, includes the Director of the Department of Management, Dick Oshlo; the Division Director of the Legislatives Service Agency, Holly Lyons; and a member representing the general public, David Underwood. Under Iowa law, the REC determines the official estimate used by the Governor in preparing the budget for the following fiscal year.

“Just as my Council of Economic Advisors told us last week, today’s Revenue Estimating Conference shows that Iowa is on the road to recovery.  While this $33.1 million increase in next year’s budget is small, it shows that our efforts to grow our economy are working. The REC’s report also confirmed FY10 budget remains balanced.

“I understand that this increase in state revenues – while good for State Government – is little comfort to those who still are without a job or are concerned about the impact this national recession is having on the services they rely upon.  And with only weeks remaining in the legislative session, there are many tough decisions we must make.   However, I want Iowans to know that as Governor, I will not stop fighting to make sure that we protect our priorities, keep our fiscal house in order, and make the sound investments that will put Iowans back to work and move Iowa forward.”

tStatement from Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal, Senate  President Jack Kibbie, House Speaker Pat Murphy, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy
“The updated revenue estimate confirms what most Iowans already knew: The lingering national recession continues to hit Iowa workers, families, communities and businesses.

“While the new estimate gives us hope that our economy has stabilized and we’re in the beginning stages of recovery, we know Iowa families continue to struggle to make ends meet. Everybody is continuing to cut back, including state government. That’s why we are keeping our focus on budgeting responsibly, reorganizing state government, finding other savings wherever possible, and keeping our state’s fiscal house in order.

“Our intention is to deposit the projected new revenues into the state’s ‘rainy day’ fund to avoid the need for mid-year cuts in education, health care and public safety in the upcoming fiscal year. As announced earlier, a portion of the ‘rainy day’ fund will be used next year to protect Medicaid services for vulnerable Iowans, including critical health care services.

“In the final days of the 2010 session, Democrats are more committed than ever to balancing the budget without raising taxes, continuing to listen to Iowans, and creating more accountability in state government. We are moving ahead with an economic plan to ensure that middle-class Iowa families and small business recover from the national recession stronger than ever.”

DES MOINES – Senate Republican Leader Paul McKinley (R-Chariton) today commented on the Revenue Estimating Conference (REC) report detailing Iowa’s estimated revenue levels:

“With spending far exceeding revenue during the last three years, it should come as no surprise to anyone that Iowans are upset with the current fiscal condition of our state. Senate Republicans believe we should take the new revenue projections and ensure Iowa’s new budget spends less than our state takes in and truly reflects the priorities of Iowans. This is not the time to continue the unsustainable spending of the last three years that have resulted in higher job-killing property taxes.”

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About O.Kay Henderson

O. Kay Henderson is the news director of Radio Iowa.


  1. Dick oshlo says


    The changemade by the REc today is fy 2010 is $900,000 higher than December, not lower as indicated in your story.