- Associated Press - Thursday, June 5, 2014

HELENA, Mont. (AP) - Analysts updated lawmakers on the state’s fiscal outlook Thursday, saying the numbers show the 2015 biennium budget is staying close to projections.

Revenues are coming within 1 percent of what they expected, Legislative Fiscal Division officials said.

The state is now forecast to have about $349 million left in the general fund at the end of the 2015 budget period. That’s down about $4 million from a March projection, caused mostly by revised estimates on an old state fund liability.

“The story is that there is no story,” said Legislative Finance Committee Chairman Sen. Lew Jones of the report he called good for Montanans. “We’re accurate on revenue and expenses, with no major hiccups on the horizon.”

The largest major source of funding revenue, about 50 percent, comes from individual income taxes, which are in line with estimates. Another large source of revenue includes property taxes, which are generating more revenue than estimated. Corporate income taxes, however, are coming in below what was estimated.

The fiscal outlook for 2017 is positive, with moderate revenue growth expected, analysts said.

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