Governor Terry McAuliffe recently announced that Virginia was ranked in Area Development magazine’s 2017 “Top States for Doing Business” annual survey for the first time since 2010. Overall, the Commonwealth placed eleventh out of 20 states ranked in the prestigious annual site consultants’ survey, which also debuted in 2010.
“This new ranking is evidence that the steps we are taking to build a new Virginia economy are paying off and that independent observers are taking note,” said Governor McAuliffe. “Virginia is a ‘Top State for Doing Business’ because we focus on building a stronger workforce and healthier business climate, and not on divisive or discriminatory social issues. I’m proud of the success we have had so far making Virginia an even better place to live, work and run a business.”
The Commonwealth ranked in the Top 10 in five of 12 subcategories that impact companies’ location and facility plans, including: Cooperative & Responsive State Government, fifth; Leading Workforce Development Programs, seventh; Competitive Labor Environment, eighth; Favorable Regulatory Environment, ninth; and Speed of Permitting, ninth.
These rankings represent significant advances for Virginia as the state has not placed in any subcategories since 2013. This year also marks the first time Virginia has ever placed in the Cooperative & Responsive State Government, Competitive Labor Environment and Speed of Permitting categories.
Area Development’s 2017 Top States for Doing Business rankings reflect the results of the magazine’s recent survey asking site selection consultants to give their top state picks in 12 categories. In 2016, the publication increased the number of states ranked from the top ten states to the top 20.
“After not placing since the survey’s inaugural year, Virginia’s overall standing in Area Development’s Top States for Doing Business rankings is a testament to the commitment of Governor McAuliffe’s administration and all of our colleagues at the state, regional, and local levels to make the Commonwealth the premier destination for business,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Todd Haymore. “There is still work to be done to get Virginia to the top ranking, and we will continue to build on this positive momentum working with members of the General Assembly and our public and private sector partners.”
-Submitted by Brian Coy