Gov. Dennis Daugaard Lures California Business to South Dakota

First it was Texas. Now, it’s South Dakota mounting an aggressive effort to lure California business.

South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard will visit California. He joins the governors of other western states in a Palm Springs meeting on Dec 7 and 8. But the most important meetings occur in San Diego the next day. There, he’ll meet downtown with 60 business executives, later with a North County law firm, and lastly with PureForge, a start-up company that is leaving California for South Dakota.

Heading the discussion topics is why it’s good to do business in South Dakota. For those who don’t know, South Dakota has the lowest unemployment (4.5%) of any state. Businesses move there, and people work in South Dakota. And the people who aren’t working in California are moving to South Dakota so that they can. For those who don’t know where to go for work, Governor Daugaard will make it clear. Crystal.

Besides jobs, what does South Dakota have that California doesn’t? The question is better posed the other way around: What does California have that South Dakota doesn’t? No personal income tax, no death tax, and no business tax in South Dakota. And that’s just for starters.

South Dakota wants to have and keep business in the state. Why? Because business–when allowed to operate unencumbered by governments–provide jobs, produce the products people want, generate revenue, pay it out in good incomes for people, which in turn generates prosperity in the state. Once business begins there, South Dakota government gets out of the way. No broken promises, overbearing restrictions, nor oppressive taxes, fines, or penalties create barriers to business growth on the road to success.

This model for prosperity is a well known phenomenon, but only among those want to work and make their own living without government help. This is an alien concept in California, however, especially to those in government whose job it is to make doing business there as difficult as possible.

Daugaard sees that the prosperity model works well for his state. He manages a pool of funds directed at economic development for South Dakota. PureForge may get millions in grants and low-interest loans to grow their fledgling business in South Dakota. When PureForge succeeds with its competitive, desirable products, South Dakota succeeds too. The process repeats for every company South Dakota attracts to the state and succeeds there.

It is a wealth-generating process practiced by prosperous states like Texas, but oh, so different from how they do things in California.

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