Perhaps nothing is more telling about whether Americans see a state as providing sufficient opportunities for prosperity and a better quality of life than whether or not they are flocking to or fleeing from its borders. No other measure paints a more realistic picture of whether or not a particular state is an ideal place to raise a family or build a career than how people “vote with their feet.”
At the Center, we know that that the high levels of taxation and over-regulation imposed in the ever-growing state budget is the main culprit in causing Rhode Island’s stagnant performance. Look at it this way, overspending by a government that mainly seeks to perpetuate and grow itself, actually works against the best-interests of the very people it is supposed to be serving. Instead of seeking to grow prosperity, government seeks to grow itself.
Even with the misguided hopes expressed by legislators based solely on a reduced unemployment rate, Ocean State families are hurting. Rhode Island suffers under the worst business climate in the country, and 48th rank on our Center’s Job’s & Opportunity Index. Also, we are the only state in New England to see its labor force decline in size in recent years, as hundreds of thousands of people have chosen to leave our state since 2004. This is not a recovery.
For real prosperity to be realized – the size of government via budget spending must be cut, so that freedom can be increased. The way the state spends should be designed to reflect the opportunities we want for our people. Not be the tool to restrict freedom and therefore opportunities. I
f only legislators were to understand that the culture of considering only the material needs of people has been harmful to the family unit, we could restore prosperity to our state. Your voice is powerful, and can change things in the Ocean State. It time to make things better for our families.