State revenue collections top predictions

By The Associated Press

JACKSON — Mississippi tax collections for December were 1.29 percent above projections but Gov. Haley Barbour says caution is still the watchword.

The Mississippi Department of Revenue reported Thursday that December collections totaled $340 million.

Barbour says the figure represents the third consecutive month where revenues have met the target — but by small margins.

Barbour says the nation is still trying to pull out of the recession so state officials must be cautious for the remainder of this fiscal year and for the next one.

He says lawmakers, who convene Tuesday, to draw up a new fiscal year budget should remember that the state will soon lose hundreds of millions of federal stimulus dollars and at the same time must keep state services operating effectively and within a balanced budget.