Last week Chief Executive Magazine released their 2009 survey ranking the 50 states based upon a number of economic statistics; gross state product per capita, civilian labor force, employment rates, unemployment rates, average salary, taxation and regulation, quality of workforce, living environment etc.
New Hampshire fared respectably at 18. Our nearest neighbors, not so well.
Massachusetts slipped to a low of 47, New York plunged to 50, Connecticut held at 38, Maine at 33 and Vermont at 36. It was suggested that many states needed to change direction if they are to become competitive again. Many of them seem to be presenting regulatory and tax disaster scenarios for large and small businesses alike.
The 2009 MSN Money site listed the states by those having the most onerous state and local taxes. Vermont won with the highest burden at number 1, followed by Maine at number 2, New York at 3, Connecticut at 8, Massachusetts at 28 and lastly New Hampshire came in second only to Alaska at 49. The figures represent the current tax ratio as a percent of income.
Other surveys based upon factors such as quality of life, healthy behavior, life evaluative indices and well being indexes seem each year to place New Hampshire in the first, second or third position of all fifty states. Not bad.
But I want to go further in examining the infrastructure of New Hampshire.
Our elected legislative assembly is the third largest in the world. I like that, the opportunity for misguided legislation is thereby reduced. We have a number of internationally known preparatory schools such as Phillips Exeter, Brewster, Proctor, Tilton and Holderness. Excellent transportation options exist with the Manchester Boston Regional Airport and Portsmouth International Airport. The Lakes Region also has the Laconia airport where Gulfstreams and Lears regularly land. Excellent interstate highways and bridges are maintained throughout the state. At the northern extremity of that band of commercial, industrial, political and educational activity extending from Washington D.C. through Boston we are well situated to participate in the decision making of the country.
Along with our undeveloped forested areas, clean water aquifers and healthy air we enjoy a quality of life that seems superior to many other areas of our country. Forest fires are infrequent and manageable for the most part. The chance of earthquake destruction is small. Drought can appear anywhere but the abundance of surface water reduces the threat. We have winter snows but not the kind that regularly seem to paralyze the western states. Our population growth thus far has been well managed and in accordance with our natural resources. New Hampshire is and has been a destination and an ideal for vacationers, shoppers, sportsmen and second homeowners.
All this compiled data and reflective conclusions lead me to the subjective part of the writing. Any large or small businesses hobbled by what are confiscatory institutionalized practices need to make their own independent assessment of New Hampshire. I and the men and women of Prudential Spencer Hughes look forward to providing solutions to your relocation questions and requirements.
Jferriman@spencerhughes.com (603) 520-5385