The best small towns in America

Published: Tuesday, Nov. 12 2013 11:09 p.m. MST

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Is it the wide streets? The legendary ski resorts? Maybe the John Wayne landscapes? Whatever it is, there’s something about Utah that keeps attracting the attention of list makers.

Just last week, the Deseret News reported that local Utah company Vivint was ranked second in the nation for job creation.

When asked in an interview by Fox Business’ David Asman what made the Beehive state so conducive to startups, Vivint’s founder and CEO Todd Pedersen replied that it's the “friendly business environment” cultivated by the local governments, combined with “a lot of high-quality people” that helped his business to thrive.

This wasn’t the first time this year that Utah has been recognized for a welcoming attitude. Just last June, four Utah metropolitan areas were noted for being among the best for unemployment rates. Last May, Utah was ranked No. 1 for economic outlook by The American Legislative Exchange Council (for the sixth consecutive year), which led Gov. Gary Herbert to declare that “people are looking to (Utah) as the leader” in a time of great economic instability.

One of the latest trends to gather attention is the Great Recession’s apparent mobility catalyst. Or, in other words, because the economy’s bad, people are moving a lot.

While it may be true that mobility is perceived to be good for job growth, the constant threat of having to uproot can be stressful to families.

While there is no easy answer to calm the nerves of a family that’s more than ready to settle down, the best approach may be to find an area with low unemployment, a reasonable cost of living and a strong sense of community. All factors that at the very least can aid a family ready to settle down, even if a lifelong career may not be in the picture yet.

According to Money Magazine’s annual list of the best small towns in the country, Utah has three such pockets of stability. Can you guess which? Click through to see Money Magazine's 50 best small towns in America
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Salt Lake City, UT

SAY What? You mean that democratic bastion SLC is not in the top 50? How can that be Becker? How can it be that three GOP/Tea Party Communities beat the likes of SLC, Park City, Price? Must be the leadership.....

Bakersfield, CA

Good job, Utah. But I will only ever visit the Beehive State. BYU was enough winter for for me, and I was born in Idaho! Love to visit ya in the summer, maybe a Christmas or two, but nothing beats the beaches, mountains, culture, museums and pure outdoors of the Sunshine State for those who have to have variety and internat'l exposure.

I do love St. George. Would live there if push came to shove...

B. Dobalina

@Truth: You may have missed the title of the article: "Best SMALL towns...". If you would bother to look, not one town on the list has a population over 50,000. Furthermore, if you would do just the tiniest bit of research, you'll see that many towns are not tea party/GOP ruined. I know it may be difficult for you to hear this realization, but cognitive dissonance does no one any good.

Springville, UT

Why all the negativity? Utah is a great place to live. If you don't think so, don't live here. Glad to live here!

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