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Utah has nabbed another business accolade.

The second-annual Small Business Survey undertaken in partnership with the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting entrepreneurship, ranks Utah as the best state for small businesses.

Utah also recently was named the Best State for Business three years in a row by Forbes magazine. In addition, Pollina recognized it as a top Pro Business state.

The Thumbtack/Ewing Marion survey used data from more than 7,000 small business owners nationwide and found Utah's rank improved from No. 4 last year.

Positive surveys "are important to Utah's economic development effort because they help keep the conversation and narrative about our state going," said Marty Carpenter, Salt Lake Chamber spokesman. "To varying degrees every survey that rates Utah positively adds to our reputation as a good place to do business."

Thumbtack, a website that provides referrals to homeowners and others who need to hire professional service providers, make these observations:

• Small business operators believed Utah deserved an "A" grade for its business-friendly regulations.

• They awarded the state an "A+" for the ease of starting a new business.

• They presented Utah with an "A-" for the friendliness of its tax code for small businesses.

Utah deserves to be ranked at the top because of its pro-business climate, said Linda Muir, director of the Center for Entrepreneurship at Westminster College in Salt Lake City.

"We have a culture of self-reliance here that leads many of the state's residences, including those who are college age, to want to start their own businesses."

Top small business friendly states

1. • Utah

2. • Alabama

3. • New Hampshire

4. • Idaho

5. • South Carolina

Source • Marion Kauffman Foundation