Governor Paul R. LePage reacted to today's release by Forbes of its annual ranking of Best States for Business. For the third year in a row, Maine ranked in last place, making it the Worst State for Business, according to Forbes.
"I am disappointed but not surprised. We will continue to be on the bottom of the barrel until we make structural changes. During the past two years, I have advocated over and over again for changes that will improve Maine's economy. We've got to get serious about lowering energy costs, improving education and paying our bills. These are the areas we need to focus on to better the lives and opportunities of all Mainers," emphasized Governor LePage.
Despite Maine's ranking as 50 overall, the state showed improvement in lowering business cost, rising from 44th in 2011 to 40th in 2012. The article cited specific challenges facing the state, including having the highest corporate tax burden--16 percent above the national average, energy costs 27 percent higher than the national average, and the oldest population in the United States.
"Without enacting bold changes, if Puerto Rico becomes a state, next year Maine's ranking will drop to 51st ," the Governor quipped, referring to Puerto Rico's recent resolution in favor of statehood.
The full text of the article is available here: http://www.forbes.com/sites/kurtbadenhausen/2012/12/12/maine-leads-list-of-the-worst-states-for-business/ .