Comptroller indicates Maryland finished fiscal year 2021 in good financial shape

Posted at 2:07 PM, Sep 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-29 15:44:28-04

ANNAPOLIS, Md. — Maryland closed out fiscal year 2021 in good financial shape despite the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a report released Wednesday by Comptroller Peter Franchot.

The State’s General Fund balance currently sits at $2.5 billion, which is more than five percent of the 2021 operating budget and 11.3 percent over pre-COVID numbers in Fiscal Year 2019.

Franchot says a significant share of the balance is attributed to better-than-expected results for tax year 2020.

Despite 14 percent of Maryland residents losing a job, and six percent remaining unemployed at the end of the year, state income tax collections grew by roughly 7.3 percent.

That's an indicator that taxpayers earning business income and capital gains experienced high growth likely with the help of government funding and grants, especially over the last six months of the fiscal year.

Additionally, the report showed corporate income tax delivering better than expected results.

"It seems likely that larger firms were well positioned to economically benefit during the pandemic -- driving profits by capturing additional market share from weaker competitors, increased sales from federal stimulus, and cutting expenses," Franchot's office said in a press release.

The Board of Revenue Estimates is scheduled to meet virtually on Thursday afternoon to consider updated projections for FY 2022 and to hear fiscal forecasts for the following years.