North Carolina is fourth and Georgia is fifth in the third annual .

Virginia ranks first for the third consecutive year.

North Carolina did drop one spot from the two previous surveys.

The survey measures six categories for the state rankings: economic climate, growth prospects, labor supply, regulatory environment, quality of life and business costs.

The Tar Heel state ranked best in regulatory environment (second) and lowest in quality of life (34th). In business costs, N.C. ranked fourth, in labor 14th, in economic climate 21st and growth prospects 11th.

Georgia climbed 10 spots in the rankings from one year ago.

Georgia’s best ranking was fifth in regulatory environment. It was sixth in growth prospects and labor, 10th in economic climate, 23rd in business costs and 31st in quality of life.

South Carolina, meanwhile, fell to 29th from 23rd in the 2007 survey.

Utah and Washington ranked second and third respectively.