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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments

A better climate

This is certainly good news:

In the Midwest, Indiana is No. 1. Nationwide, it's No. 5.

That's in terms of places to do business and according to the Pollina Corporate Top 10 Pro-Business States for 2012 study.

In its ninth year, the study, which was co-published with the American Economic Development Institute, gauges 32 factors controlled by state government. Those include taxes, human resources, education, right-to-work legislation, energy costs, infrastructure spending, workers compensation laws, economic incentives and state economic development efforts.

Indiana moved up 18 places since the 2010 study, earning the title of "most improved state." It was the only Midwestern state and the only Northern state in the top 10.

I said in a post yesterday it was hard to prove definitvely one way or the other that right-to-work legislation had been a factor in getting jobs to Indiana. That's true of any specific initiative, such as a reduction in this or that tax rate or things like going to daylight savings time. But it's easier to see the overall trend of the state's efforts, and this study seems to show we're going in the right direction.

Just having the right climate still doesn't mean we will attract more companies, however. We still have to market ourselves and convince companies this is a state worth coming to. How to do that? Good topic for a gubernatorial debate, huh?

Just the other day:

Indiana’s three gubernatorial candidates found much to agree on about the future of the state in a series of one-on-one conversations Tuesday with former Chief Justice Randall Shepard.

[. . .]

More than 200 people watched as all three agreed the state should lower taxes, encourage more vocational studies and support the energy industry.

Details, details, details, but all three agree on lower taxes of one kind or another. I'd say that's encouraging.