Arkansas ends fiscal year with $1.6B budget surplus

July 5, 2022 GMT

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Arkansas ended its fiscal year with a record $1.6 billion budget surplus, state finance officials said Tuesday as Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced that he would convene a special legislative session next month to take up tax relief proposals.

The Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration said the state’s net available revenue for the fiscal year that ended June 30 totaled more than $7.4 billion. The state’s individual income, corporate income and sales tax collections came in above forecast and the previous year’s numbers.

The last record for a budget surplus in Arkansas was $945.7 million, which the state set at the end of the previous fiscal year.

Hutchinson, a Republican, said he would call a special session for the week of Aug. 8 to consider tax relief proposals. Hutchinson said he had enough “broad consensus” on tax relief to set a date.

Hutchinson said he does not plan to include abortion on the agenda for the session. A state ban on abortion took effect hours after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last month. The ban does not include exemptions for rape or incest, and Hutchinson has said he does not plan to ask lawmakers to add those exceptions.