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Fall 2008 Keystone Business Climate Survey

Total Started Survey: 245
Total Completed Survey: 232 (94.7%)

Section I: Business Climate

1. In general, do you think business conditions in Pennsylvania are better, the same, or worse than they were SIX MONTHS AGO?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
Better 1.2% 3
Same 33.1% 81
Worse 64.9% 159
No Opinion 0.8% 2
  Answered Question 245
  Skipped Question 0

2. LOOKING AHEAD SIX MONTHS, do you think business conditions will be better, the same, or worse than they are now?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
Better 13.1% 32
Same 32.4% 79
Worse 50.4% 123
No Opinion 4.1% 10
  Answered Question 244
  Skipped Question 1

3. Are employment levels at your company higher, the same, or lower, than they were SIX MONTHS AGO?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
Higher 11.1% 27
Same 60.7% 148
Lower 25.0% 61
No Opinion 3.3% 8
  Answered Question 244
  Skipped Question 1

4. LOOKING AHEAD SIX MONTHS, do you anticipate that employment levels at your company will be higher, stay the same, or be lower?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
Higher 14.8% 36
Same 63.0% 153
Lower 18.1% 44
No Opinion 4.1% 10
  Answered Question 243
  Skipped Question 2

5. Have your company's sales increased, stayed relatively the same, or decreased during the PAST SIX MONTHS?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
Increased 18.1% 44
Same 35.0% 85
Decreased 44.9% 109
No Opinion 2.1% 5
  Answered Question 243
  Skipped Question 2

6. Do you expect your company's sales to increase, stay relatively the same, or decrease during the COMING SIX MONTHS?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
Increase 22.6% 55
Same 39.1% 95
Decrease 32.9% 80
No Opinion 5.3% 13
  Answered Question 243
  Skipped Question 2

7. At any point in the PAST SIX MONTHS has your company considered moving all or part of its Pennsylvania operations to another state?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
Did move some operations 2.1% 5
Considered moving some operations 2.9% 7
Considered moving all operations 5.0% 12
Moved operations into Pennsylvania 0.0% 0
Didn't consider any moves 90.0% 217
  Answered Question 241
  Skipped Question 4

8. Do you foresee at any point in the COMING SIX MONTHS your company considering moving all or part of its Pennsylvania operations to another state?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
May move all operations 2.9% 7
May move some operations 2.5% 6
Not considering any moves 93.3% 224
May move operations INTO Pennsylvania 1.3% 3
  Answered Question 240
  Skipped Question 5

9. In general, do you have a POSITIVE, NEGATIVE or NO OPINION of the job performance of the following individuals?

  Positive Negative No Opinion Response
Count
President George W. Bush 33.3% (81) 56.4% (137) 10.3% (25) 243
Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke 24.9% (60) 47.7% (115) 27.4% (66) 241
U.S. Senator Arlen Specter 30.6% (74) 46.3% (112) 23.1% (56) 242
U.S. Senator Robert P. Casey, Jr. 19.3% (47) 52.3% (127) 28.4% (69) 243
U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson 19.9% (48) 53.9% (130) 26.1% (63) 241
Governor Ed Rendell 19.2% (46) 72.5% (174) 8.3% (20) 240
Attorney General Tom Corbett 30.6% (74) 15.3% (37) 54.1% (131) 242
Auditor General Jack Wagner 10.0% (24) 15.5% (37) 74.5% (178) 239
  Answered Question 243
  Skipped Question 2

10. In general, do you have a POSITIVE, NEGATIVE, or NO OPINION of the job performance of the following institutions?

  Positive Negative No Opinion Response
Count
United States Senate 8.3% (20) 83.0% (200) 8.7% (21) 241
United States House of Representatives 4.1% (10) 87.2% (212) 8.6% (21) 243
Pennsylvania Senate 13.2% (32) 62.6% (152) 24.3% (59) 243
Pennsylvania House of Representatives 13.2% (32) 62.4% (151) 24.4% (59) 242
  Answered Question 243
  Skipped Question 2

Section II: Issues

11. The state legislature is considering legislation to require employers to offer seven days of paid sick leave. How would this mandate affect your business operation? (Check all that apply.)

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
NO IMPACT 27.6% 62
GO OUT OF BUSINESS 4.0% 9
REDUCE THE NUMBER OF HOURS EMPLOYEES WORK 17.3% 39
LAYOFF EMPLOYEES 16.0% 36
DROP OR REDUCE HEALTH CARE BENEFITS 20.9% 47
CUT NUMBER OF PAID VACATION DAYS 40.4% 91
DELAY OR CANCEL PAY RAISES 46.2% 104
ALREADY OFFER MORE THAN SEVEN DAYS, BUT WOULD REDUCE THEM TO THE STATE MANDATE 4.9% 11
Other (Toggle View) 13
  Answered Question 225
  Skipped Question 20

12. How would an automatic minimum wage COLA (Cost of Living Adjustment), tied to the Consumer Price Index, impact your business?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
LAY-OFF EMPLOYEES 10.3% 24
FREEZE HIRING 19.8% 46
REDUCE HOURS 16.4% 38
RAISE PRICES 24.6% 57
COMBINATION OF THE ABOVE 31.5% 73
NO IMPACT 34.1% 79
REFUSED/NO OPINION 3.9% 9
Other (Toggle View) 3.9% 9
  Answered Question 232
  Skipped Question 13

13. What is the best role that state government can play to stimulate the economy and create jobs?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
LOWER TAXES AND REDUCE REGULATION ON ALL BUSINESSES 78.9% 172
PROVIDE TAX BREAKS AND INCENTIVES TO SELECTED COMPANIES 11.9% 26
REFUSED/NO OPINION 9.2% 20
Other (Toggle View) 23
  Answered Question 218
  Skipped Question 27

14. Do you FAVOR or OPPOSE leasing the Pennsylvania Turnpike to a private company?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
STRONGLY FAVOR 5.2% 12
SOMEWHAT FAVOR 14.8% 34
SOMEWHAT OPPOSE 14.8% 34
STRONGLY OPPOSE 49.1% 113
DON'T KNOW 13.5% 31
REFUSED/NO OPINION 2.6% 6
  Answered Question 230
  Skipped Question 15

15. Governor Ed Rendell says Pennsylvania's highway infrastructure is in "crisis"and hundreds of millions more must be spent to upgrade roads and bridges. Which of the following options would you support for securing that funding? (You may check more than one option.)

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
LEASE THE PENNSYLVANIA TURNPIKE 15.6% 35
RAISE GASOLINE TAXES 14.7% 33
RAISE VEHICLE REGISTRATION/LICENSE RENEWAL FEES 29.3% 66
RAISE STATE INCOME TAXES 4.4% 10
REMOVE STATE POLICE FUNDING FROM THE MOTOR LICENSE FUND/MOVE FUNDS TO HIGHWAYS 20.4% 46
ENTER INTO LONG-TERM DEBT (BOND ISSUE) 17.3% 39
CUT SPENDING IN OTHER AREAS/MOVE FUNDS TO HIGHWAYS 65.3% 147
CUT MASS TRANSIT FUNDING/MOVE FUNDS TO HIGHWAYS 32.0% 72
Other (Toggle View) 30
  Answered Question 225
  Skipped Question 20

16. Do you think the U.S. economy is either currently in a recession or headed toward a recession?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
ALREADY IN RECESSION 50.2% 116
HEADED TOWARD RECESSION 33.3% 77
IS NOT/WILL NOT BE IN RECESSION 11.3% 26
DON'T KNOW 5.2% 12
REFUSED/NO OPINION 0.0% 0
  Answered Question 231
  Skipped Question 14

17. Do you think the federal take-over of mortgate companies Freddie MAC and Fannie MAE were a necessary move, or unwarranted government intrusion into the private sector?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
NECESSARY MOVE 57.6% 133
UNWARRANTED FEDERAL INTRUSION 35.9% 83
REFUSED/NO OPINION 6.5% 15
  Answered Question 231
  Skipped Question 14

18. Do you think the efforts to bail-out the financial services sector are a necessary step, or unwarranted government intervention in private markets?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
NECESSARY STEP 43.5% 100
UNWARRANTED GOVERNMENT INTERVENTION 51.3% 118
REFUSED/NO OPINION 5.2% 12
  Answered Question 230
  Skipped Question 15

19. Have you experienced any difficulty in obtaining needed credit as a result of the turmoil in the financial services sector?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
YES 16.5% 38
NO 74.5% 172
REFUSED/NO OPINION 9.1% 21
  Answered Question 231
  Skipped Question 14

20. Do you think more drilling for oil should be permitted of the shores of the United States?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
YES 87.7% 200
NO 10.5% 24
REFUSED/NO OPINION 1.8% 4
  Answered Question 228
  Skipped Question 17

21. Do you think oil drilling should be permitted in the Alaskan National Wildlife Reserve (ANWR)?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
YES 79.3% 184
NO 17.2% 40
REFUSED/NO OPINION 3.4% 8
  Answered Question 232
  Skipped Question 13

22. Westinghouse is building state-of-the-art nuclear reactors in China. Should Pennsylvania allow those reactors to be built here?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
YES 78.9% 183
NO 10.3% 24
REFUSED/NO OPINION 10.8% 25
  Answered Question 232
  Skipped Question 13

23. On a scale of one to five with one being the highest priority and five being the lowest priority, please rate the following methods of reducing America's dependence on foreign oil:

  ONE TWO THREE FOUR FIVE Response
Count
MORE OFFSHORE DRILLING 53.4% (118) 13.1% (29) 8.1% (18) 6.8% (15) 18.6% (41) 221
DRILLING IN ANWR 43.2% (92) 14.6% (31) 13.1% (28) 7.5% (16) 21.6% (46) 213
CONSERVATION 41.8% (94) 15.6% (35) 20.9% (47) 8.9% (20) 14.2% (32) 225
MORE NUCLEAR POWER GENERATION 48.0% (106) 17.6% (39) 15.4% (34) 7.7% (17) 11.3% (25) 221
DEVELOPMENT OF SOLAR POWER 46.2% (104) 19.1% (43) 15.1% (34) 11.6% (26) 8.9% (20) 225
DEVELOPMENT OF WIND POWER 42.5% (96) 18.6% (42) 18.1% (41) 9.3% (21) 11.9% (27) 226
DEVELOPMENT OF TIDAL POWER 27.4% (58) 21.7% (46) 24.5% (52) 16.0% (34) 10.8% (23) 212
DEVELOPMENT OF HYDROGEN POWERED VEHICLES 34.2% (76) 20.3% (45) 24.3% (54) 9.9% (22) 11.7% (26) 222
DEVELOPMENT OF NATURAL GAS POWERED VEHICLES 36.2% (80) 23.1% (51) 23.5% (52) 11.3% (25) 6.3% (14) 221
IMPROVED FUEL EFFICIENCY ON GASOLINE POWERED VEHICLES 50.7% (116) 17.5% (40) 13.5% (31) 7.4% (17) 10.9% (25) 229
INCREASED MINING OF SHALE OIL RESERVES 42.1% (93) 23.1% (51) 13.1% (29) 7.7% (17) 14.0% (31) 221
  Answered Question 232
  Skipped Question 13

24. IF the election for President of the United States were held today, would you vote for the Democratic ticket of Barack Obama and Joseph Biden, or would you vote for the Republican ticket of John McCain and Sarah Palin?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
OBAMA/BIDEN 16.5% 38
MCCAIN/PALIN 70.6% 163
UNDECIDED 13.0% 30
  Answered Question 231
  Skipped Question 14

25. In what part of Pennsylvania is your business located?

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
Northwest PA 10.4% 24
Southwest PA 11.7% 27
Northcentral PA 9.6% 22
Altoona/Johnstown 3.9% 9
Southcentral/Harrisburg 13.5% 31
Southeastern PA 36.5% 84
Lehigh Valley 3.9% 9
Northeastern PA 10.4% 24
  Answered Question 230
  Skipped Question 15

26. Which category best describes your position at the business in which your work:

  Response
Percent
Response
Count
OWNER 75.9% 176
CEO/COO/CFO 11.2% 26
STATE MANAGER 0.9% 2
LOCAL MANAGER 4.7% 11
NO ANSWER/REFUSED 3.4% 8
Other (Toggle View) 3.9% 9
  Answered Question 232
  Skipped Question 13

Taking the Pulse of Pennsylvania