Winning Streak Continues: Utah is Pollina Corporate’s No. 1 Pro-Business State

Pete CodellaNews

Hot on the heels of a Forbes top spot, Utah’s string of economic accolades continues with the No. 1 ranking in the Pollina Corporate Real Estate and American Economic Development Institute (AEDI)’s “Top Pro-Business States Report.”

In 2005, Utah ranked 23rd in the Pollina/AEDI report. By 2012, the state took the top spot as the No. 1 Pro-Business State in America. That’s a 22-place jump in seven years and—what’s more—Utah’s stayed No. 1 since.

“Utah’s success is the result of a truly unified effort,” Gov. Gary R. Herbert said. “Utah’s business community demonstrates what economic leadership is. This fourth consecutive win is earned through the collaboration of good government, business and education partnerships.”

Just last month, Forbes magazine named Utah the No. 1 Best State for Business for the fifth time out of six years. Utah has built an economic dynasty reminiscent of sports legacies like the Boston Celtics, Green Bay Packers or Serena Williams.

“Utah has been a consistent national leader when it comes to being pro-business and shows no signs of slowing down any time in the future with low taxes, an excellent workforce, and a top notch economic development agency,” said Brent A. Pollina, president of Pollina Corporate Real Estate and author of the study. “Governor Herbert has proven that not only is he able to preserve the efforts of past administrations but he has the ability to build on these past efforts to maintain Utah’s very pro-business operating environment.”

Pollina’s detailed report card graded the state in a number of categories, including tax rates, infrastructure, utilities costs and high school completion, rounding out to an overall “A” grade. Citing both the work of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) and the Economic Development Corporation of Utah (EDCUtah), Pollina called Utah a “symbol of economic growth that other states should emulate.”

“Team Utah has stolen the spotlight as an economic champion,” said Val Hale, executive director of GOED. “As impressive as our past comebacks have been, we prefer consistency. We prefer to stay on top and know that requires a lot of work. Diligent improvement is what keeps a dynasty a dynasty. We look forward to continuing our work as part of an incredible team.”

The Pollina Corporate ranking is considered the “Gold Standard” among business leaders and site selectors for evaluating locations. The study has no sponsors and involves a thorough evaluation across 32 factors. It has been conducted for 12 years.

“This most recent recognition from Pollina Corporate, along with last month’s announcement by Forbes, is validation of a world-class economic development model,” said Jeff Edwards, president and CEO of EDCUtah. “Our winning model combines the leadership from the Governor’s Office of Economic Development, the passion and knowledge from local economic developers, and the commitment from our private industry.”