Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

A Better World; Military Retirees Find Good Life in Florida

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

A Better World; Military Retirees Find Good Life in Florida

Article excerpt

Florida is the best state in the nation for military retirees.

This is not new to Jacksonville, what with its Navy base history and a welcoming environment to service members and retirees.

Jacksonville is a popular destination for military retirees given the weather, the low taxes and the many services.

A survey by WalletHub looked at economy, quality of life and health care with 22 different variables such as veterans per capita, number of VA health facilities and job opportunities.

Florida came out on top, followed in order by Montana, New Hampshire and Wyoming (Georgia was No. 12).

As WalletHub notes, the average officer retires at just 45 years of age and often is looking for a post-career job. Jacksonville has seen many of these officers retire here. Local government has been led by many former officers.

But there are plenty of enlisted members who return in need of services.

And here in Jacksonville, government, nonprofits and businesses are eager to help end homelessness for veterans.

FLORIDA'S FISCAL HEALTH

Florida ranks as best in the nation for fiscal health, according to a study by George Mason University.

Florida has a good balance of assets to cushion declines, budget surpluses and low unfunded pension liabilities.

The worse states, ironically, have high income and high taxes. They tend to get into a spending mode and don't know when to stop. Examples are Massachusetts, Illinois and New Jersey.

Florida shows that fiscal conservatism leads to fiscal responsibility. And the fact that Florida has no state income tax means there is less temptation to overspend.

And Florida has been slashing the number of state employees. Florida now has the lowest percentage of employees in state government of any state.

TOP BUSINESS STATE

Florida ranked No. 2 for business for the fifth straight year, reported Chief Executive magazine.

Florida still trails Texas.

Florida ranks high because chief executives like the quality of life in the Sunshine State as well as taxation and regulation.

High tax states like California, Illinois and New York ranked at the bottom.

One warning sign: Florida's workforce quality was ranked No. 18, a sign that the state should not be scrimping on colleges like Florida State College at Jacksonville.

HOME SALES

Nationally, home sales in the first quarter reached their fastest rate in a decade, reports The Wall Street Journal.

A sales increase of 1.4 percent was the best since the first quarter of 2007, reported the National Association of Realtors. The national median home price increased 6.9 percent from the first quarter the previous year, the highest price increase in nearly two years.

GOOD NEWS ON TEENS

Here is some really good news:

Fewer teens are having sex today. …

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