Utah racks up another prestigious accolade for its economy.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce named Utah the top state in their "Enterprising States" rankings for the second year in a row. The rankings are based on six categories – economic performance, exports, technology and entrepreneurship, business climate, talent pipeline and infrastructure. While the Beehive State did not top any of those lists, they were in the top-10 in every category.
"You know how tough it is to win back-to-back titles. Just ask the Seattle Seahawks," joked Governor Gary Herbert at a ceremony celebrating Utah's second win.
Herbert said the main reason Utah is doing so well while other states are struggling is the diversity you'll find in the state's economy.
"We've created an environment that empowers the private sector," he said. "The private sector creates wealth which in turn creates jobs."
Former Maine Gov. John McKernan, now president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, visited Utah on Wednesday morning to highlight how Utah's governmental policies have fostered the roaring economy the state now enjoys.
"As a former governor, I am fond of the comments by former Justice Brandeis that 'states are the labratories of democracy.' I also believe that states are the labratories of reform and innovation at the state level can give us insight into what works and what doesn't. We don't just want to give credit to the great things you've done here in Utah, but I hope other states will see the kind of policies you've adopted and understand that they can make a difference."
Utah ranked no lower than 6th in all six categories
Economic performance – 3rd
Exports – 3rd
Technology and Entrepreneurship – 4th
Business climate – 6th
Talent pipeline – 4th
Infrastructure – 3rd
"We may not be the best at everything," said GOED executive director Val Hale. "But we are above average in so many categories that we are approaching excellence."
Hale added people from other parts of the country are always amazed by how well-off Utah is economically.
"It's no secret that Utah punches above their weight class. The rest of the country is amazed by what's going on in Utah."