ANNAPOLIS — For the third consecutive year, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has rated Maryland among the top five states in the country for economic growth, job creation and innovation.
In its annual report titled “Enterprising States”, the national chamber gives the O’Malley administration high marks for policies and conditions that help grow jobs, issues on which members of the state business community often find fault.
This year the chamber also classified Maryland as one of “the next boom states,” those that are “best positioned to grow, create jobs, and prosper in the coming five to 10 years.”
In the array of rankings, Maryland continues to do poorly when it comes to taxes and regulatory climate — the area where critics typically pound Gov. Martin O’Malley. But even there, Maryland ranked eighth in the nation for “tax climate for mature firms.”
While Maryland does better than most of the 50 states, it still ranks slightly below its nearest fierce competitor, Virginia, as the southern neighbor moved up in the rankings from sixth to third, while Maryland stayed at fifth place. The report even refers to Virginia as “the emerging East Coast economic superstar.”