Washington’s latest revenue forecast calls for a $156 million increase in state tax receipts through June 2013, largely due to the Legislature’s policy changes and fund shifts – and not economic improvement. The forecast otherwise carries few surprises and details from the Economic and Revenue Forecast Council’s web site are here.
The Council’s forecast comes after February’s report raised the outlook by about $96 million – the first such upward revision in a couple of years.
The new outlook continues that trend but sees a slower growth in employment by about 7,000 jobs, according to Steve Lerch, the interim state forecaster. He said that 53 months into the recession of 2008, Washington still has 100,000 fewer jobs than the past peak.
“Things are tracking the forecast fairly well and things are going well,” Lerch said, qualifying the outlook by saying “the recovery is slow.’’ His forecast also predicts an increase of $197 million in the next biennium – which runs from July 2013 through June 2015.