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August 18, 2019

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Louisiana Positives: 2003
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 Louisiana is 2nd in the South in increasing teacher pay since 1997 (Southern Regional Education Board, November 2003).
 Louisiana ranked 7th in the 2003 Generosity Index. The index is compiled from 2001 tax return data, comparing how much residents have to how much they give. Louisiana ranked 44th on the "have scale" and 12th on the "giving scale" (Catalogue for Philanthropy, November 2003). 
Three Louisiana cities made the list of Top Midsize Cities for Entrepreneurs in the South for 2003. Lafayette headlined the group at No. 6, Baton Rouge came in at No. 11, and Shreveport/Bossier City at No. 21. (, November 2003).,5276,498-S-Mid,00.html 
New Orleans was ranked No. 10 in the Top Large Cities for Entrepreneurs in the South for 2003. The Crescent City came in at No. 32 overall (, November 2003).,5276,498-S-Large,00.html 
Louisiana climbed to No. 17 in Site Selection magazine's 2003 Business Climate Report rankings. Louisiana ranked 24th in the 2002 ranking (Site Selection, November 2003). 
Several Louisiana cities were named in Outlook Magazine's 2003 Annual Quality of Life rankings. Named among the Best Housing: Baton Rouge - No. 5, Lafayette - No. 6, Houma - No. 8, Monroe - No. 9, Lake Charles - No. 19, and New Orleans - No. 24 (Outlook Magazine, October 2003).
Louisiana has the 3rd most digitally advanced legislature in the country (Center for Digital Government, October 2003). 
Louisiana Film Commission nabbed 2nd place in the latest Best Government Agency Website ranking (Center for Digital Government, October 2003). 
Eighty-two percent of Louisiana legislators (118 members) participated in the National Council of State Legislators' Back to School Week last year, 2nd in the country (National Council of State Legislators, September 2003). 
Louisiana State University earns recognition as the "Most Diverse University," and largest producer of African American chemistry Ph.D's in the Kaplan/Newsweek Hot Colleges List (Newsweek, September 2003). 
Houma came in at No. 16 in the list of Top 100 Best Performing Cities. The ranking is based on economic performance and job creation. On the Smallest Metro Area list, Monroe held at No. 22, while Alexandria came in at No. 46 (Milken Institute, June 2003). 
Louisiana ranks No. 4 in Bloomberg's annual rating of the "wealth-friendly" states. The rankings are compiled by comparing taxes across the nation, including levies on salaries, real estate and personal property (Bloomberg Wealth Manager Magazine, June 2003). 
New Orleans has been named the 23rd Best City for Singles (Forbes Magazine, June 2003). 
Mobility Depot, L.L.C of Baton Rouge has been named one of America's Top 100 fastest-growing businesses (Entrepreneur, June 2003).,6524,,00.html 
The Greater Shreveport Chamber of Commerce has been named one of the nation's Top 10 Local Economic Development Groups (Site Selection Magazine, May 2003). 
Three Louisiana cities rank in the Top 25 as places with the lowest costs of doing business: Lafayette (No. 6), Shreveport (No. 7), and Baton Rouge (No. 25) (Forbes Magazine, May 2003). 
The Louisiana National Guard Youth ChalleNGe Program, a 17-month program targeting high school dropouts, was selected for the third time as the Best Overall Program in the nation. This award is presented by the United Services Organization (USO) at an event each year in Washington, D.C. (National Guard Bureau, May 2003). 
Louisiana's school accountability program ranked in the Top 10 in the nation for the second year in a row, based on the overall character and effectiveness of the accountability system. The state climbed to 6th, up from last year's ranking at No. 7 (Princeton Review, May 2003). 
LSU's School of Business ranked among the Top 12 in the nation (Entrepreneur Magazine, April 2003)
Louisiana ranks 6th in Business Incubators per 10,000 businesses and 14th in Science & Engineering Bachelor of Science degrees granted as a percentage of total Bachelor's degrees granted (State Science & Technology Indicators, April 2003). 
Louisiana ranked 11th in the country in manufacturing expansions over the last two years (2000-02), 14th in overall corporate facilities and expansions over the last two years, and 17th for the number of overall corporate facilities and expansions during 2002 (Site Selection Magazine, March 2003). 
Louisiana's percentage of uninsured children dropped from 20 percent to 14 percent over the last two years - the greatest improvement among all 50 states (Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured, March 2003).
Deridder and Plaquemine have been named among the Top 10 (7th & 9th, respectively) U.S. Small Towns for New and Expanded Facilities over the last two years. New Iberia ranked in the top 20, coming in 17th (Site Selection Magazine, March 2003). 
Lake Charles' Citgo Petroleum Corp. has been recognized for making the 6th largest capital investment in the country last year (Site Selection Magazine, March 2003).  
New Orleans was named the 3rd best restaurant town in America (Bon Appetit, March 2003).
Louisiana ranks 10th in imposing the lowest total tax burden (federal, state, and local taxes included) (Tax Foundation, February 2003). 
Higher education in Louisiana continues to be among the most affordable. While the national average increase of college tuition over the past two years was nine percent, Louisiana tuition increased just four percent at its four-year colleges (6th lowest). The study also noted that total state appropriations for higher education in Louisiana increased six percent, ranking it 5th (National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education, Winter 2003).
New Orleans ranks 10th best for limiting sprawl in a metropolitan area (Smart Growth America, January 2003). 

Louisiana ranks 5th in the latest Generosity Index, despite ranking 44th in the nation in earnings, according to IRS data. The Generosity Index notes that Louisiana residents gave more than $1.2 billion in donations in 2002 (Ellis L. Phillips Foundation, January 2003). 

Growth in spending and Louisiana's willingness to make funding for higher education a priority has once again been recognized. Louisiana is 2nd in the nation in percentage increase over the last two years in funding for postsecondary education, 6th over the past five years, and 6th over the past 10 years. For the current fiscal year, Louisiana was ranked 8th for its effort to increase higher education - while at the same time the state ranked 41st for its capacity to fund the increase (Grapevine Center for Higher Education & Educational Finance, January 2003).