Virginia Ranks Third In Economic Competitiveness | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

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Virginia Ranks Third In Economic Competitiveness

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It appears Virginia leads the pack when it comes to economic competitiveness. That's the upshot of a new study from the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).  

The study used 15 different policy variables, and how each state dealt with fiscal crises weighed heavily, says Jonathan Williams, director of ALEC'S Center for State Fiscal Reform. Maryland, which ranked 20th in the list, raised taxes and targeted businesses to fix its budget shortfall and as a result, one wealthy county lost $1 billion when a company pulled out to find a better business climate. 

Virginia, in contrast, cut spending but improved its business relations, says Del. Riley Ingram (R). Ingram believes that is one of the reasons why Rolls Royce decided to move here:

"The reason they chose Virginia, the big thing, was Virginia right-to-work," he says. (Virginia's status as a right-to-work state means labor unions cannot require that all employees join a union; this can mean lower wages and cost savings for companies doing business there.)

Only Utah and South Dakota ranked higher than Virginia.

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