Small Business Friendliness Survey: Kansas Gets ‘A,’ Missouri Gets ‘C,’ Illinois Gets ‘D’
The usual suspects are out in full force with the Parade of Economic Horribles they say would come from Missouri enacting Kansas-style growth policies. However, a survey by Thumbtack.com and the Kauffman Foundation published this week throws yet another bucket of cold water on those warnings. The survey asked more than 7,000 small businesses how states are doing in facilitating small business development . . . and the results are not good for Missouri.
Kansas was viewed favorably for its support of small business, improving upon last year’s A- ranking. The state graded well for the ease of starting a business, especially its regulatory systems.
Missouri slipped slightly in 2013 after earning a B- a year ago. That decline can be attributed partly to issues with licensing and permitting requirements.
You can find an interactive map that looks at all the aspects the survey examined — including regulations, health and safety, licensing, and more — here. As with any index, all of the survey’s findings have to be put in the proper context: survey methodologies, assumptions, and objectives do matter, so your mileage may vary on whether you think Thumbtack.com and the Kauffman Foundation are balancing their factors credibly. In that context, I think it is still worthwhile to highlight their topline results, visually represented in the screenshot below and available on Thumbtack’s website.
That Midwestern section sure looks like the kind of growth corridor I have discussed in the past, but unfortunately, Missouri sticks out like a sore thumb on the map. The question is, will Missouri be a part of this growth corridor? Will Missouri go the way of Kansas . . . or of Illinois?