ODT Posts May PLF Distribution: PLF Down 34.5%

UPDATE 5/6/20: Today, the Ohio Office of Budget and Management (OBM) released their preliminary revenue data for the month of April showing how much tax revenue came into the state last month. Total state General Revenue Fund (GRF) tax receipts finished the month $866.5 million (-35.3%) below estimate. Total fiscal-year-to-date tax receipts through April are below estimate by $777.0 million (-4.0%).

OBM Preliminary Revenue Data Report April 2020 (PDF)

Due to the economic impact of COVID-19 on the state’s economy, Gov. DeWine announced state agency spending will be reduced by $775 million for the remainder of Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 which ends on June 30. Because Ohio is mandated to balance its budget each year, the Governor announced the following budget reductions for the next two months:

  • Medicaid: $210 million
  • K12 Foundation Payment Reduction: $300 million
  • Other Education Budget Line Items: $55 million
  • Higher Education: $110 million
  • All Other Agencies: $100 million

Also, the Governor announced the state would not be utilizing money from Ohio’s Budget Stabilization Fund (“rainy-day fund”) to balance the budget for the remainder of FY 2020.

It is important to note that the Public Library Fund (PLF) distribution is separate from state agency spending and is not impacted by the Governor’s announced reductions – at this time. As a reminder, the PLF is 1.7% of the state’s GRF tax receipts from the previous month. Therefore, the $14.4 million in unrealized funding comes from state tax receipts coming in below estimate, not the reductions announced by the Governor or a reduction in the PLF percentage.

OLC will continue to monitor the situation and provide more information once OBM’s monthly financial report for the month of May is released.

5/5/20: The Ohio Department of Taxation (ODT) posted the May 2020 Public Library Fund (PLF) distribution of $27,363,886 – which is $14,404,872 (-34.5%) below ODT’s estimate for the month and brings the Calendar Year (CY) 2020 total to $153,036,463. As expected, the May PLF distribution is significantly under estimate due to the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and business closures.

The Office of Budget and Management (OBM) will release the state’s April tax receipts this week. Once we have that information and OBM’s monthly financial report for May, we will be able to better understand the impact. Some of the loss in the PLF should be made up later in August with the filing of personal income taxes.

A look at the PLF distribution for the past three years and a link to an Excel spreadsheet listing each county’s distribution total for May 2020 can be found on the OLC website.