An annual survey conducted by 24/7 Wall St. ranks North Dakota the best-run state in the nation for the second consecutive year. The national survey evaluates hundreds of data sets including statistics on financial health, standard of living and government services to determine how well each state is managed. The top five best-run states were: North Dakota, Wyoming, Iowa, Nebraska and Utah.
"This study recognizes that North Dakota's sound fiscal policies are working," Gov. Jack Dalrymple said. "We are in a strong position to provide tax relief, maintain a healthy reserve while also investing in statewide infrastructure improvements, education, enhancements to our quality of life and other priorities."
The study determines how well states are run by looking at fiscal management, taxes, exports, and GDP growth by sectors, as well as, quality of life components such as poverty, income, unemployment, high school graduation, crime and foreclosure rates. The best-run states had certain characteristics in common, including well-managed budgets, high-living standards and low-unemployment. High-ranking states also demonstrated stable fiscal management and have earned high credit ratings.
In the survey, 24/7 Wall St. noted that North Dakota's GDP grew by 13.4 percent last year, fueling the nation's strongest state economy. North Dakota's economy has outpaced all other states for the past three years, the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis reports. Since 2000, North Dakota's per capita personal income has increased by more than $29,000 while the nation's average per-capita personal income has increased by $13,400.