Big jump in Indiana budget surplus triggering tax refund

INDIANAPOLIS — A big jump in Indiana’s state tax collections will result in a refund for taxpayers, although they’ll have to wait for that money.

State officials announced Wednesday that overall tax revenue grew 14% over the past year as collections bounced back stronger than expected from the COVID-19 pandemic recession. That pushed state government’s cash reserves to $3.9 billion as of June 30.

Since the record-high reserves figure represents 23% of state spending, it will trigger the state’s automatic taxpayer refund process for the first time since 2012.

Officials say about $545 million will be refunded to taxpayers as a credit on their state tax returns submitted next year. That will reduce 2021 tax bills, but the state won’t be sending out budget surplus refund checks.

The 2012 refund amounted to $111 for individual income tax filers, but state officials won’t determine the new refund size until later this year when they know the number of 2020 Indiana tax filers.