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Virginia falls to third on CNBC ranking

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Virginia has lost its hold on the top spot in CNBC’s annual list of the best states for business.

The Old Dominion, which has ranked No. 1 in “America’s Top States for Business” for three of the six years of its existence, fell to No. 3 this year.

Virginia trailed top-ranked Texas and No. 2 Utah.

Virginia, however, held the third spot only by a thread against fourth-ranked North Carolina.

In scoring on 10 criteria, Virginia did not do well on infrastructure & transportation and economy, according to CNBC.

“Infrastructure — specifically the state’s perpetually clogged highways — has long been an issue in fast-growing Virginia, and there is fresh evidence this year that the state is having trouble keeping pace. With some of the country’s toughest commutes, the state dipped to number 33 in the category, down from 10th a year ago,” CNBC said.

“Virginia’s economy remains in the top tier. But it has suffered in part due to circumstances beyond its control,” the network said. “The state’s proximity to Washington, D.C. has helped in previous years. Late last year, however, Moody’s slapped a negative outlook on Virginia’s otherwise pristine bond rating because of the federal government’s fiscal crisis. That contributed to Virginia slipping to 10th from eighth in our Economy category this year.”

By contrast, the commonwealth had high scores on education and work force.

The Lone Star State is making its third appearance at the top of the list.

CNBC said Texas racked up an impressive 1,604 points out of a possible 2,500, with top-10 finishes in six of 10 categories of competitiveness.

This year’s categories and possible point totals are:
• Cost of Doing Business (350)
• Workforce (350)
• Quality of Life (350)
• Infrastructure & Transportation (325)
• Economy (325)
• Education (225)
• Technology & Innovation (225)
• Business Friendliness (200)
• Access to Capital (100)
• Cost of Living (50)

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