Earlier this week, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) released its 5th edition of Rich States, Poor States, an annual study of public policies in each state affecting economic growth and development. As one might expect, Texas made out quite well.

Overall, the state ranked second in the study’s Economic Performance Ranking, a comparison of each state’s 10-year performance in three areas: Per Capita Personal Income, Absolute Domestic Migration, and Nonfarm Payroll Employment. The state ceded the top spot to Wyoming.

In addition, Texas also ranked 16th in the study’s Economic Outlook Ranking, a “forward-looking forecast based on the state’s standing” in 15 policy areas, i.e. whether or not the state is a right-to-work state (it is), the number of tax and expenditure limits it features (1), and the number of public employees per 10,000 people (575.1).

Texas earned its highest praise, however, from a short comment made by the authors trying to condense the 100-plus page report into a short blurb: “If we had to summarize the findings of this publication and our comparative analysis of state policy in one sentence, it would be this: Be more like Texas and less like California.” [emphasis mine]

For all its challenges, Texas is still a national leader when it comes to creating an economic environment conducive to growth and development through sound public policies…and this new ALEC report is just the latest recognition of that fact.

-James Quintero