WASHINGTON -- Virginia appears to be getting better at estimating its tax revenues, according to Gov. George Allen.

The commonwealth's general fund tax collections for fiscal 1994 will exceed the official estimate by less than $20 million, the smallest excess amount in eight years, his office said yesterday.

"The level of accuracy in this revenue forecast is the best since fiscal 1986, when excess general fund revenues were only $8.9 million," Allen said in a statement.

General fund tax collections for fiscal 1994, which ended June 30, totaled $6.5 billion, up from $6.0 billion in fiscal 1993. The 1993 collections was $112 million over the official estimate.

"The results for fiscal 1994 reflect the soundness of the commonwealth's revenue estimating process," Allen said. That process "helps us maintain a reputation for topnotch financial management and retain our AAA bond rating."

The $6.5 billion in tax collections for 1994 comprises individual and corporate income taxes, the sales tax, gross receipt taxes on public service corporations, the insurance premium tax, taxes on the sale of alcoholic beverages, interest earned on idle cash balances, and other miscellaneous sources.

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