Despite the pandemic, the state’s revenue this biennium is slightly above projections. North Dakota’s Office of Management and Budget’s monthly report came out Thursday, showing a 2.2 percent — roughly $94 million — higher than projected revenue for the biennium.

For the month of March, it’s 39 percent higher than projected.

One of the biggest highlights is the gaming tax, which came in at 284 percent higher than expected for the biennium so far, and about 118 percent higher for the month. OMB Director Joe Morrissette says that’s likely because of the increase in electronic pull tabs, which were approved by the legislature in 2017.

Other areas seeing increases for March 2021 include the Motor Vehicle Excise Tax, which Morrissette says shows more people are buying cars than would be expected this past year.

“We are ahead of the original forecast by over 2 percent for the biennium to date, so that’s very positive news, and this was a very strong month where we exceeded the original forecast by about $38 million, so that pushed that number up and helps us be on a positive track to finish up the biennium,” Morrissette said.

However, oil revenue has not come near the projected $4 billion, with about $2.9 billion for the biennium to date. The revenue forecasts were made last legislative session, and the biennium runs from July of 2019 to the end of this June.