News of Virginia’s honor at being named the No. 1 state in the nation in Forbes.com’s “Best States for Business” ranking for the second year in a row is a noteworthy distinction that accentuates the Commonwealth’s hard work and proactive measures in developing and maintaining an economic-friendly environment.

But, it also increases the pressure for West Virginia — a state, which despite efforts to improve its business atmosphere — continues to wrestle with significant job creation and industry growth.

In border regions such as southern West Virginia, the problem is even more pronounced. When you’re close enough to a neighboring state to lob a rock across the border, counties with a less business-friendly stereotype must work even harder to attract industry.

The Forbes.com report rates states on several objective measurements, including business cost, regulatory climate, quality of the workforce, and economic growth.

Virginia finished in the top 10 in four of the six main categories, according to information provided by Governor Timothy M. Kaine’s office. The Commonwealth ranked first in regulatory environment, fifth in quality of its workforce, sixth in overall quality of life and eighth in prospects for growth.

“To receive this honor for a second consecutive year underscores Virginia’s commitment to creating and maintaining a positive economic climate, and it validates the decision our business partners have made to locate here,” Kaine said in a release announcing the award. “It’s great to be designated the best in the nation, but it’s even more rewarding to know that Virginia will keep the No. 1 title for yet another year.”

The Forbes’ ranking adds yet another feather in Virginia’s cap of economic excellence. In March, the top U.S. corporate relocation firm Pollina Corporate Real Estate designated Virginia as “America’s Most Business-Friendly State.”

In the overall Forbes.com rankings, Utah was ranked as the second “Best State for Business,” followed by North Carolina, Texas, Washington, Idaho, Florida, Colorado, North Dakota and Minnesota.

“While other states have been working to catch up, we’ve been working diligently to improve our business climate, and our continued number No. 1 ranking by Forbes is evidence that our efforts are delivering results,” Virginia House of Delegates Speaker William J. Howell said. “And, the landmark transportation legislation we passed this year will further improve our standing. By keeping our tax burden low and our regulations reasonable, and by further developing our work force, Virginia can continue at the top of this ranking next year.”

As we congratulate Virginia for this outstanding and remarkable honor, we also remind our West Virginia lawmakers the increased pressure it places on the Mountain State.

Located next-door to the nationally recognized Commonwealth, adequate policies toward attracting and retaining industry simply will not suffice. We must work harder and smarter to move from good to great.

Once again, we congratulate Virginia on this well-deserved honor and encourage our leaders in West Virginia to take a cue from the Commonwealth toward improving our business climate in the Mountain State.