State Transportation Revenue Dips amid drop in fuel taxes, registration fees

The state’s transportation fund took in almost 5 percent less in 2019-20 than was expected, driven largely by people driving less amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the Legislative Fiscal Bureau, the transportation fund took in nearly $1.9 billion over the fiscal year, about $97.3 million less than what the state expected when Gov. Tony Evers signed the budget in July 2019.

For the year, motor fuel taxes came in $69.1 million less than had been expected, a drop of 6.4 percent. The state also took in $45.8 million less than it had projected for registration and title fees, a decline of 6.9 percent.

Those shortfalls were partially offset by boosts elsewhere. For example, the transfer from the petroleum inspection fund, funded with a fee of 2 cents per gallon of fuel sold, was $16 million higher than expected.

The transportation fund also received $8.5 million more in miscellaneous department revenue and earned an additional $3.4 million on investments than had been projected.