Mississippi revenue jumps 5.67 percent in December

By The Associated Press

JACKSON — Mississippi revenues continue to run ahead of projections, lifting state government finances.

The state Department of Revenue said Thursday that through December it has collected nearly $2.1 billion for the state’s General Fund, where most spending is concentrated. That’s nearly 3 percent, or $62 million, more than projected for the first six months of the 2012 budget year. In December alone, collections were 5.7 percent above 2010′s same month.

The trend could give lawmakers more to spend as they write the 2013 budget. That budget begins July 1.

Gov.-elect Phil Bryant called for caution, though, citing high unemployment and projections of slow economic growth in Mississippi.

“We must prepare for the budget challenges that lie ahead,” Bryant said in a statement, renewing his call to link spending to measurable results.