Though the economy is still sputtering, at least state tax revenue is improving. The state collected about $12.6 million more in tax revenue in October than had been projected. That's the third straight month that revenue has exceeded expectations. Thus far this fiscal year, tax revenue is 2.9 percent ahead of projections and 11.8 percent more than at the same time last year, resulting in a $75 million surplus. The overall increase largely stems from the increase in the statewide sales tax, even though opponents had argued that the increase would be bad for the economy. "This news is not just an example of how the responsible budget that was passed by the bipartisan coalition in the Legislature is working," Gov. Mark Parkinson said in a statement, "but also how our economy is heading in the right direction."