It’s Not the Costs — So What Is It?


The Tax Foundation’s latest look at “the real value of $100 in each state” should generate more frustration for New Mexico’s economic-development establishment.

Costs in the Land of Enchantment are 21 percent cheaper than in New York, 18 percent cheaper than in California, and 8 percent cheaper than in Virginia. With the exception of Oklahoma, a hundred bucks goes further in New Mexico than it does in each of its neighbors.

Great weather, friendly folks, stunning scenery, a strategic location, and low costs — the Rio Grande Foundation has long maintained that New Mexico has the potential to be an economic powerhouse.

But excessive occupational licensing, an all-powerful PRC, no right-to-work law, a cumbersome tax on gross receipts, a work-ethic-sapping welfare complex, too much federal control over land and employment, and trendiness-driven corporate welfare as economic development? It all adds up to a spectacularly ineffective prescription for wealth creation and job growth.