More than four in ten of [the CEOs] have ranked New York as the worst state to do business in–second only to California in unfavorable mentions. The most common gripes included high taxes and anti-business regulations. Joining New York and California on the list of most unpopular states were New Jersey, Michigan and Massachusetts.
The DCI study, coming as it did amidst growing talk of state fiscal crises around the country, is particularly revealing. Of the approximately $48 billion in accumulated budget shortfalls that the 29 states with projected deficits are facing, $33 billion, or two-thirds of the gap, is concentrated in those five states considered by corporate executives to be the least friendly to business. Meanwhile, among the five states ranked as having the best business environment, Texas and North Carolina have no projected budget gaps, and Georgia, Tennessee and Florida are facing shortfalls amounting to about $4.1 billion, or less than one-tenth of the states’ total.