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Overall revenue 2% ahead of forecast in North Dakota

BISMARCK (AP) — Sales and oil tax collections in North Dakota are well below forecasts due to the coronavirus outbreak, but budget leaders say overall revenue is ahead of the Legislature’s projections for the current period.
State Office of Management and Budget Director Joe Morrissette presented the latest revenue figures to the Legislature’s finance committee Tuesday.
May revenue to the state’s general fund for government operations was down about 19%, or $36 million, from a 2019 legislative forecast.
But overall, state revenue is running nearly 2%, or $45 million, ahead of the forecast, Morrissette said.
The general fund’s biggest revenue source, sales taxes, were down about 35%, or $27 million, which Morrissette attributes to the pandemic.
“That’s the worst month that we’ve seen,” he said, telling the committee, “we would expect that to be kind of the bottom.”
Oil tax revenue also plunged in the same period, to $38 million, or about 81% less than forecast.
North Dakota’s oil tax savings account this month posted its lowest-ever deposit of about $10 million from April oil production collected in May and distributed in June.