BOARD OF EQUALIZATION APPROVES $8.2B FOR FY 2020 APPROPRIATIONS
OKLAHOMA CITY (Feb. 20, 2019) — The Board of Equalization, chaired by Governor J. Kevin Stitt, on Wednesday certified $8,249,071,274 in revenues for FY 2020 appropriations, which is $574.5 million, or 7.5 percent, more than was appropriated for FY 2019.This amount is $37.8 million, or 0.5 percent, less than the December estimate.
“Today’s report by the Board of Equalization is encouraging,” said Governor Kevin Stitt. “Our state’s economy has remained strong because of Oklahomans who are working hard, opening businesses and creating jobs. Moving forward, my budget priorities for FY 2020 remain the same. My number one focus is on improving our state’s savings and delivering agency accountability. These are the keys to unlocking Oklahoma’s turnaround and putting us on a path to a stronger future. In order to accomplish this, we must invest in our savings account and recognize that true fiscal accountability and transparency is not possible until the governor has hire and fire authority over state agencies. I look forward to working with the Legislature this session to get this done.”
All major tax categories showed growth between the board’s December meeting and its February meeting except personal income tax, which fell $27.9 million, or 1.0 percent, and gross production taxes on natural gas, which decreased by $53.2 million, or 11.4 percent.
"It's important going into the next two fiscal years that we build a state budget that is sustainable. While we did not meet the threshold for money to be deposited into the new Revenue Stabilization Fund this year, it is very likely that a large deposit will happen next fiscal year," said Secretary of Budget Mike Mazzei. “This deposit could be hundreds of millions of dollars, which means there could be no growth revenue in FY 2021."
"We need to be cautious when allocating agency appropriations this year," Mazzei added. "If current trends continue, and we appropriate all available funds for FY 2020 operations, we could be setting ourselves up for some difficulty next year.”
Oklahoma state government builds a 5 percent cushion into every appropriated state budget to prevent mandatory budget reductions if revenues fall below the official estimate. If revenues are projected to fall more than 5 percent below the estimate for the remainder of the fiscal year, a revenue failure is declared and mandatory appropriation reductions must occur to maintain a balanced budget.
The Board of Equalization packet is available on the OMES website.