U.S. News & World Report on March 9 released its 2021 Best States rankings – all 50 states were categorized based on data within 71 metrics across eight categories, such as education, health care and infrastructure.
This year, U.S. News also compiled data related to the COVID-19 pandemic, exploring just how it damaged states’ economies and budgets. The media-ranking publication said that more weight was given to some state measures than others, based on a survey of what matters most to people. Health care and education were weighted most heavily. Then came state economies, infrastructure, and the opportunity states offer their citizens. Fiscal stability followed closely in weighting, followed by measures of crime and corrections and a state’s natural environment.
New Jersey wasn’t in the top 10, nor was it in the bottom 10, but its overall ranking came in at No. 19 thanks to scoring the highest marks for education and in the top five when it comes to health care and crime and corrections. Where our state fell very short, with only Illinois ranking lower, was for its fiscal stability. Infastructure also measured poorly (darn pot holes).
Overall, New Jersey was ranked No. 19, Looking at the breakdown the Garden State was placed at No. 4 in Health Care; No. 1 in Education; No. 33 for its Economy; No. 41 when looking at its Infrastructure; No. 19 for Opportunity; No. 49 for Fiscal Stability; No. 5 in Crime and Corrections; and No. 33 for Natural Environment.
10 Best States in America:
4. New Hampshire
10 Lowest-Ranked States in America:
48. New Mexico
47. West Virginia
42. South Carolina