by Robert Maynard
Vermont is experiencing a trend that does not bode well for our economic future. Worker enthusiasm in Vermont is rated as among the lowest in the nation, while welfare benefits are among the nation’s highest. According to a recent Gallop Poll, only workers in Minnesota are less enthusiastic than those in Vermont. At the same time, according to a recent Wall Street Journal article, only Washington state has higher welfare benefits than Vermont. It would be interesting to investigate into whether there is a correlation between these two rankings. Do higher welfare benefits lead to less enthusiasm for work? Vermont Digger covered the worker enthusiasm in this article. Here is an excerpt:
A Gallup survey shows Vermont has one of the least-engaged workforces in the nation. According to Gallup, only 27 percent of the Vermont employees are “emotionally engaged” at work. The only state with a less-enthusiastic workforce is Minnesota.
The results, released Tuesday, are based on surveys of 151,284 employees conducted throughout 2012. At least 506 employees were surveyed in every state.
Here is what the Wall Street Journal article had to say about Vermont’s generous welfare benefits:
Vermont has as minimum wage of $8.46 an hour, the third highest in the country, behind Washington and Oregon. The state also ensures this figure rises each year, either by 5% or by the percentage change in inflation. Few states offer an earned income tax credit as generous as Vermont’s, which equals up to 32% of the federal income tax credit. In order to fund policies that promote economic security, Vermont also taxes residents more than most other states. For fiscal year 2011, the state collected $4,293 per person, higher than all but three states.