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Florida ranked No. 8 state for contractors

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Florida is the eighth best state for contractors to do business according to a ranking released Wednesday by Associated Builders and Contractors.

The Merit Shop Scorecard grades states on project labor agreements, wage mandates, job growth rates, the use of public-private partnerships and whether or not they have “right to work” laws on the books, among other metrics.

Florida outperformed national averages in all categories, including scoring an “A” grade in wages, right to work status and the use of public-private partnerships.

“ABC applauds Governor Scott and the Florida Legislature for their commitment to free enterprise and helping to craft an environment where contractors can thrive,” said Rick Watson, Chief Counsel for the ABC of Florida.

“By restricting anti-competitive prevailing wage mandates and supporting right-to-work and workforce development programs, Florida policymakers have helped reduce the cost of public construction to taxpayers and made it easier for contractors to expand their operations and create more jobs in Florida,” said Watson.

Texas ranked No. 21, California ranked No. 32 and New York came in at No. 39, giving Florida the top ranking amongst other large states. The Sunshine State also fared better than neighboring states Georgia, which took ninth place, and Alabama, which was the No. 14 state in the ranking.

Arizona was the top-ranked state in the scorecard, followed by Louisiana, Virginia, North Dakota and North Carolina. Each of those states scored an “A” in project labor agreements, compared with a “C” for Florida. Four of the top five states also earned an “A” for technical education programs available to high school aged residents.

Florida had a 6.4 percent average job growth rate on the scorecard, tying with Idaho for the fourth best job growth rate among all states. Only North Dakota, Colorado and Nevada had a better rate.

Drew Wilson covers legislative campaigns and fundraising for SaintPetersBlog and FloridaPolitics.com. While at the University of Florida, Wilson was an editor at The Independent Florida Alligator and after graduation, he moved to Los Angeles to cover business deals for The Hollywood Reporter. Before joining Extensive Enterprises, Wilson covered the state economy and Legislature for LobbyTools.

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