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Economic Forecasting Board Ups Estimate For Current FY, Drops For FY 22, Leaves FY 23 Estimate Unchanged

      The Nebraska Economic Forecast Advisory Board put out its official prediction for revenue through Fiscal Year 2023 yesterday and it shows optimism for the current year and caution for the next two.

     The Forecasting Board increased its estimates for this year, which ends in September, by $90-million dollars, dropped the projection for next year by $5-million, and made no changes to its February prediction for FY 22-23. 

       The revised revenue projections mean more money for tax cuts, new spending, and the state’s cash reserve – its “rainy day” account.

      They leave lawmakers with $245-million of unobligated revenue, although bills still working their way through the legislature total more than that.

     The updated predictions also mean more money for the new property tax relief plan of income tax credits to offset part of the property taxes paid for schools by landowners.

     The legislature set aside $125-million for the first year, but the new revenue estimates would put that total at $358.7-million for the two following years.

      Combined with other programs, the state would spend $1.5-billion on direct property tax relief in that two years.

      Governor Pete Ricketts issued a statement saying the numbers show that the Forecasting Board believes “Nebraska’s economy continues to show significant signs of strength” as it emerges from the pandemic.” 

      As a result, the governor said, “the Legislature (can) stay the course on delivering additional significant tax relief for the people of Nebraska.”