New Mexico ranks at the top among states for "subcontractor-friendly public policies," according to the American Subcontractors Association. The annual report scores each state in individual policy areas such as retainage and "bid shopping," and uses the scores to assign an overall score and grade to each state.

New Mexico ranks at the top among states for "subcontractor-friendly public policies," according to the American Subcontractors Association.

"The ASA Report: The Policy Environment in the States," ranks New Mexico as No. 1 for its overall public policies impacting construction subcontractors. The annual report scores each state in individual policy areas such as retainage and "bid shopping," and uses the scores to assign an overall score and grade to each state.

All states other than New Mexico had overall scores of less than 58 points out of 100 - failing grades - according to the association.

"The overall policy environment for subcontractors in the states remains unacceptable," said ASA President Vincent Terraferma. "While there are some states that improved in particular areas, such as prompt payment and retainage, even high-ranking New Mexico's overall score was 69 out of a possible 100. ASA is committed to improving the policy environment for subcontractors, including using this report to educate policymakers and others about the need for reforms."

ASA calculated the overall grade for each state, including Washington, D.C., by scoring seven key state public policy areas, and then combining the points for a final score and final grade for each state. ASA awarded points based on prompt-payment protections, treatment of pay-if-paid clauses, mechanic's lien protections, payment bond protections, retainage limitations, anti-indemnity protections and "anti-bid shopping" measures.

The scoring in each policy area took into account both laws and judicial decisions.

Kansas showed the greatest overall improvement among the states in the past year with its state ranking increasing from 29th to 19th out of 50. The change was due to a sweeping law for private construction requiring construction owners to pay prime contractors within 30 days of completed, undisputed work.

For more information on the study and for state rankings, visit www.asaonline.com.