(Oklahoma City) Oklahoma’s continued inclusion in a national report released this week as one of the top 10 “business friendly” states didn’t just happen, a veteran state senator said Thursday.
Senator Jeff Rabon, D-Hugo, said the state’s outstanding showing in the annual rankings by Pollina Corporate Real Estate Inc. is a result of work by the Legislature to foster an environment to grow existing Oklahoma businesses and attract new firms.
“Things like this just don’t happen. We’re in the top 10 for the second year in a row because of the pro business programs – like Quality Jobs law and targeted incentives – and because we’ve worked hard to manage our capitol and use our resources wisely,” said Rabon, who served as the Senate Finance Committee chairman for the past two years.
“What the Pollina report tells us is that the Legislature, in working with Governor Henry, has done a very good job of striking the right balance between providing incentives and making sure the proper infrastructure is in place when business and industry come calling,” Rabon said.
The Legislature has accomplished that, he said, while at the same time maintaining a low tax burden in the state. According to the Tax Foundation, a conservative Washington D.C. think tank, Oklahoma ranks sixth lowest among states for the combined federal, state and local taxes paid per capita.
The Senator said Oklahoma shouldn’t be satisfied with being 10th among business friendly states and that he knows the Legislature will continue to work to move our state up the ladder in future years.
“One thing we have to overcome, though, is the negative image that some self-serving Oklahomans seem to love to portray about Oklahoma. That serves no positive purpose. I’m proud of Oklahoma, proud to be an Oklahoman and proud of the work the Legislature has done to make our state one of the most business friendly states in the nation,” Rabon said.