Maryland hasn’t had a great showing in several state ranking reports lately.
In the Mercatus Center’s 2017 state fiscal ranking, Maryland appeared in the bottom five, at No. 46, thanks to issues with cash solvency for short-term bills (46th rank), budget solvency (39th rank), and long-run solvency for debt obligations and economic shocks (44th rank).
Meanwhile, in WalletHub’s recent report on the best states to start a business, Maryland ranked 48th. To score all 50 states, WalletHub analysts evaluated them on 20 metrics, including average growth in number of small businesses, average growth of business revenues, five-year business survival rate, taxes, labor costs, availability of human capital, and financing accessibility. On the 100-point scale, Maryland scored 37.86, with the lowest marks in business environment (40th) and business costs (46th).
However, the good news is that Gov. Larry Hogan remains committed to improving the state’s business climate. Last month, Maryland Secretary of Budget and Management David Brinkley told WCBC Radio that creating a business-friendly environment is still the top priority of Hogan’s administration, part of a long-term economic revitalization goal.
His efforts evidently haven’t gone unnoticed because Gov. Hogan was ranked the second most popular governor in the U.S., according to the Morning Consult Governor Approval Rankings. Based on the interviews with more than 195,000 registered voters nationwide, Gov. Hogan has 68 percent approval and 16 percent disapproval.
Small business owners, in particular, have appreciated his support of Maryland businesses, especially his veto of House Bill 1 this year, which would have mandated paid sick leave for all employers across the state. While the Legislature could still override his veto, at least two lawmakers have spoken out about the harm that could be caused if this mandate were to go into effect. State Sen. Michael Hough wrote an op-ed for The Frederick News-Post, calling on the General Assembly to sustain the veto, and state Del. Chris Adams wrote an op-ed for DelmarvaNow, outlining why there has been bipartisan opposition to mandated paid leave and why Gov. Hogan was right to veto it.