The American Legislative Exchange Council released its 14th annual “Rich State, Poor State” review last month and Vermont continues to suffer one of the worst economic outlooks in the nation. It ranked 49 out of 50 for the overall economic outlook. The Green Mountain state has finished last or second-to-last every year since 2008.

New Hampshire finished 19th, down two spots from last year.

The report explains:

The Economic Outlook Ranking is a forecast based on a state’s current standing in 15 state policy variables. Each of these factors is influenced directly by state lawmakers through the legislative process. Generally speaking, states that spend less – especially on income transfer programs, and states that tax less - particularly on productive activities such as working or investing – experience higher growth rates than states that tax and spend more.

The new edition finds that even through the pandemic, states with policies such as low or no income taxes and worker freedom are more economically competitive and better positioned for wage growth, job creation and domestic in-migration compared to states with higher taxes and government spending. The new rankings also reveal that, as proven by new 2020 Census data, Americans “vote with their feet” by moving from high-tax to low-tax states.

Out of the 50 states, Vermont ranks as follows: Top marginal personal income rate of 8.75 percent is 43rd; Top marginal corporate income tax rate of 8.5 percent is 39th; Personal income tax progressivity (change in tax liability per $1,000 income) of $28.76 is 48th; Property tax burden (per $1,000) of $52.05 is 49th; Sales tax burden (per $1,000 personal income) of $12.55 is 7th; Remaining tax burden (per $1,000) of $27.76 is 48th; Estate/Inheritance tax is 50th; Recent legislative tax change of $0.59 is 37th; Public employees per 10,000 of 596.3 is 43rd; State minimum wage of $11.75/hour is 39th; Average workers’ compensation cost (per $100 of payroll) of $2.21 is 48th; and Right to work (lack of) flexibility is tied for 50th.

For collectivists, this is all good news. But a lot of talented, innovative job creators harbor a crazy notion that they should actually be allowed to keep some of their hard-earned wealth. Unfortunately for Vermont, those job creators will continue taking their businesses to states that aren’t so hostile toward them.

To wit… New Hampshire ranks as follows: Top marginal personal income rate of 0 percent is 1st; Top marginal corporate income tax rate of 7.7 percent is 33rd; Personal income tax progressivity $0 is 2nd; Property tax burden (per $1,000) of $55.89 is 50th; Sales tax burden of $0 is 1st; Remaining tax burden (per $1,000) of $20.74 is 37th; Estate/Inheritance tax is 1st; Recent legislative tax change of $0.27 is 29th; Public employees per 10,000 of 513.5 is 21st; State minimum wage of $7.25/hour is 1st; Average workers’ compensation cost (per $100 of payroll) of $1.37 is 23rd; and Right to work (lack of) flexibility is tied for 50th.

It’s an open secret that ruling liberals in Montpelier have long powered New Hampshire’s wild economic success. Which all might explain why Realtor.com says Manchester-Nashua, N.H. is the hottest housing market in the country and Concord holds the second-highest spot on the list. Vermont isn’t on the list, even though we’re offering cash bribes to folks in a hair-brained effort to lure them.

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