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In keeping with the recommendation by the City of Prescott and the Town of Prescott Valley, the U.S. Department of Transportation has selected SkyWest Airlines, operating as United Express, to provide Essential Air Service (EAS) at Prescott Municipal Airport (PRC) for a period of two years, beginning in late August, 2018.

United Express will operate 50-seat CRJ 200 jets from Prescott, with roundtrip flights daily to Denver, and six days a week to Los Angeles, every day except Saturday.   Prescott Airport Director, Dr. Robin Sobotta, notes that passengers will be able to connect through Denver or LA to hundreds of destinations throughout the world.

Travelers will be able to book tickets using the United Airlines website beginning the week of July 23, or they can use online travel websites, or local travel agents.

Prescott Mayor Greg Mengarelli said that United Express will change the travel paradigm for area residents.  “For years we have all operated under the mind set of going to Phoenix for air travel,” said Mengarelli.  “Travelers can now fly anywhere they want in the world conveniently from Prescott.  Our thanks to Dr. Sobotta and the team that brought this together.”

“We are so pleased with the Department of Transportation, our local leaders who voiced support for this service, the Airport Advisory Committee, and our dedicated airport staff for bringing all of this together, said Dr. Robin Sobotta, Airport Director.   “It is a new day for commercial air service in Prescott.”

Prescott Valley Mayor Harvey Skoog said that SkyWest Airlines is the right choice for essential air service.  “Our leadership wholeheartedly supports the selection of SkyWest Airlines.  They have a solid reputation of providing reliable air service to communities across the country. I am certain they will meet the needs of Prescott Valley and the entire region.”

Prescott Chamber of Commerce President Sheri Heiney said that the new essential air service will be good for business.  “Los Angeles is the number two market for tourism in Prescott,” said Heiney.  “The added convenience of flying directly into Prescott will strengthen our appeal as a destination for leisure and business travel.”

On July 3, the City of Prescott recommended SkyWest Airlines, operating as United Express, as their preferred carrier for EAS at PRC.  Prescott City Council unanimously approved a recommendation to the DOT to select SkyWest Airlines- United Express as the region’s EAS Provider.

On March 26, Great Lakes Airlines ceased service at PRC, resulting in a DOT request for proposals from airlines interested in providing EAS at the airport.  Those proposals were due at midnight on July 2.  Seven proposals were received, including bids from Advanced Air, ADI/California Pacific Airlines, Boutique Air, Key Lime Air, Mokulele Airlines, Silver Airways, and SkyWest Airlines.  Three of the carriers bid Prescott with regional jets.  The carriers bid a variety of locations including Los Angeles, Denver, Phoenix, Las Vegas, and Hawthorne, CA.

SkyWest Airlines is based in St. George, Utah.  According to their website, SkyWest Airlines has over 13,000 aviation professionals operating over 2,400 daily flights, Sky West Airlines connects millions of passengers each month to 245 destinations across North America. Sky West Airlines operates in partnership with Delta Airlines, United Airlines, American Airlines, and Alaska Airlines, and has a fleet of 443 aircraft.

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By Cicely Wedgeworth | Jun 1, 2018

With home prices in California continuing to skyrocket, residents of some of the state's priciest spots are doing the unthinkable—searching for homes in less expensive areas or even (gasp) out of state.

Here at®, we're marking the end of an era: For the first time in five years, California metros are no longer dominating our monthly list of the hottest U.S. real estate markets. Since 2013, California has consistently been the state with the most metros in our top 20. (The list is based on which areas receive the most page views on our site and where homes are selling the fastest.) In March, California claimed 11 of the top 20 spots—but only six in April. May's hot list, with only four California markets, makes it clear that that was no one-off.

And the soaring prices are likely to blame—a statewide increase in median list prices of 83% over the past six years, to $549,000 from $300,000.

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“Our research shows many California residents may have reached their breaking point,” said Danielle Hale, chief economist for, in a statement. “Affordability is pricing them out of the California home market, and many are searching for more affordable options in other areas."

So where are they going? Some of the new hot spots include Phoenix, Las Vegas, and Prescott, AZ. Some folks are pulling up stakes and moving to cheaper areas within the state, according to our research on listing search patterns in 16 California counties and American Community Survey migration estimates. Outbound home searches for those counties are two times greater than the U.S. average.

As Hale noted, this exodus could help slow price appreciation in California. But it could also potentially heat up prices and reduce inventory in surrounding markets.

“In Northern California you’re more likely to be looking within the state at Sacramento County, El Dorado County. ... You can get a home for half the price of what you can in the Bay Area," says Javier Vivas,'s director of economic research.

Talk about a bargain: The Sacramento area, about two hours from San Francisco, has a median home list price of just $474,950, compared with $997,050 in the San Francisco metro area, which includes Oakland and Hayward (it's much higher in the city proper). The local economy is strong, but more and more people are choosing to make the long commute to gigs in the Bay Area.

Here are the top California counties drawing residents from other parts of the state. On average, they offer properties that are 17% more affordable than where relocaters are coming from.

Top in-state destinations for California residents

  1. Riverside County

  2. San Bernardino County

  3. Los Angeles County

  4. Orange County

  5. Sacramento County

  6. San Diego County

  7. Placer County

  8. Contra Costa County

  9. El Dorado County

  10. Ventura County

According to our analysis, 52% of California residents looking outside their county are looking outside the state—although not too far.

"If you’re in Southern California, you’re more likely to be looking out of the state in Nevada and Arizona," Vivas says. "It’s more affordable and offers more new construction.”

Plus, those places are still relatively close to friends and family in California, and have similarly dry and sunny weather. The main draw, of course, is home prices that are on average 43% cheaper.

Top out-of-state destinations for California residents

  1. Maricopa County, AZ (Phoenix)

  2. Clark County, NV (Las Vegas)

  3. Yavapai County, AZ (Prescott)

  4. Ada County, ID (Boise)

  5. Washoe County, NV (Reno)

  6. Mohave County, AZ (Lake Havasu)

  7. Pima County, AZ

  8. Kootenai County, ID (Coeur d'Alene)

  9. Travis County, TX (Austin)

  10. Hawaii County, HI (Big Island)

Cicely Wedgeworth is the managing editor of She has worked as a writer and editor at Yahoo, the Los Angeles Times, and Newsday.

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Retirement might be the end of your career, but it doesn’t have to be the end of financial security or life satisfaction. Timing is often a primary concern with retirement, as it generally coincides with the age at which we may receive Social Security or pension benefits. Not everyone can retire when they want to, though. Almost 30 percent of non-retired adults haven’t saved any money for retirement, though not necessarily through any fault of their own.

But in addition to when you want to retire, a good question to ask is where. That can be difficult to decide without doing lots of research. Even in the most affordable areas of the U.S., most retirees cannot rely on Social Security or pension checks alone to cover all of their living expenses. Social Security benefits increase with local inflation, but they replace only about 40 percent of the average worker’s earnings.

If retirement is still a big question mark for you because of finances, consider relocating to a state that lets you keep more money in your pocket without requiring a drastic lifestyle change. To help you find that permanent, affordable place to call home, WalletHub compared the 50 states across 41 key indicators of retirement-friendliness. Our analysis examines affordability, health-related factors and overall quality of life. Read on for our findings, insight from a panel of experts and a full description of our methodology.

Best States to Retire

Ask the Experts

In order to choose a place to settle for retirement, you must carefully consider various factors such as your finances, health and how you plan to spend your time. For advice on these choices, we turned to a panel of experts in fields such as aging and taxes. Click on the experts’ profiles to read their bios and responses to the following key questions:

  1. What is the most common mistake that retirees make when choosing where to live?

  2. What are some tips for living on a fixed income in retirement?

  3. What are the top factors retirees should consider when choosing a state for retirement?

  4. Should states work to attract retirees? What are the pros and cons to having a large retiree population?

  5. Should retirees be exempt from certain state and local taxes?

  6. How might changes to the tax code influence retirement security?


In order to identify the most retirement-friendly states, WalletHub compared the 50 states across three key dimensions: 1) Affordability, 2) Quality of Life and 3) Health Care.

We evaluated those dimensions using 41 relevant metrics, which are listed below with their corresponding weights. Each metric was graded on a 100-point scale, with a score of 100 representing the most favorable conditions for retirement. For metrics marked with an asterisk (*), we used the square root of the population to calculate the population size in order to avoid overcompensating for minor differences across states.

We then calculated each state’s weighted average across all metrics to determine its overall score and used the resulting scores to rank-order our sample.

Affordability - Total Points 40

  • Adjusted Cost of Living: Double Weight (~11.43 Points)

  • General Tax-Friendliness: Full Weight (~5.71 Points) Note: This metric is based on WalletHub’s States with the Highest & Lowest Tax Rates ranking.

  • Tax-Friendliness on Pensions & Social Security Income: Full Weight (~5.71 Points)

  • Tax-Friendliness on Estate or Inheritance Tax: Full Weight (~5.71 Points)

  • Annual Cost of In-Home Services: Half Weight (~2.86 Points)

  • Annual Cost of Adult Day Health Care: Half Weight (~2.86 Points)

  • Share of Adults Aged 65 and Older Who Could Not Afford a Doctor Visit: Full Weight (~5.71 Points) Note: This metric measures the share of the population aged 65 and older who needed to see a doctor in the past 12 months but were restricted due to cost.

Quality of Life - Total Points 30

  • Share of Population Aged 65 & Older: Full Weight (~1.67 Points)

  • Elderly-Friendly Labor Market: Full Weight (~1.67 Points) Note: This metric takes into account both the percentage of people aged 65 and older working and the number of part time employees for every full time employee for people aged 65 and older.

  • Share of Population Aged 65 & Older Below Poverty Level: Full Weight (~1.67 Points)

  • Elderly Food Insecurity Rate: Full Weight (~1.67 Points) Note: This metric refers to the percentage of adults aged 60 years and older who faced the threat of hunger in the past 12 months.

  • Access to Public Transportation: Full Weight (~1.67 Points) Note: This metric measures the percentage of commuters who use public transit as a proxy for the availability of public transportation.

  • Mildness of Weather: Double Weight (~3.33 Points) Note: This metric is based on WalletHub’s Cities with the Best & Worst Weather ranking.

  • Access to Scenic Byways: Full Weight (~1.67 Points) Note: This metric takes into account both the number of scenic byways and the length of scenic byways.

  • Shoreline Mileage: Full Weight (~1.67 Points)

  • Museums per Capita*: Full Weight (~1.67 Points)

  • Theaters per Capita*: Full Weight (~1.67 Points)

  • Golf Courses per Capita*: Full Weight (~1.67 Points)

  • Access to Adult Volunteer Activities: Full Weight (~1.67 Points)

  • Elderly Volunteer Rate: Full Weight (~1.67 Points)

  • Violent-Crime Rate: Full Weight (~1.67 Points)

  • Property-Crime Rate: Full Weight (~1.67 Points)

  • Quality of Elder-Abuse Protections: Full Weight (~1.67 Points) Note: This metric is based on WalletHub’s States with the Best Elder-Abuse Protectionsranking.

  • Air Quality: Half Weight (~0.83 Points)

  • Drinking-Water Quality: Half Weight (~0.83 Points) Note: This metric measures the percentage of the population potentially exposed to water exceeding a violation limit.

Quality of Life - Total Points 30

  • Family & General Physicians per Capita: Full Weight (~1.76 Points)

  • Dentists per Capita: Full Weight (~1.76 Points)

  • Nurses per Capita: Full Weight (~1.76 Points)

  • Share of Geriatricians Required to Meet Estimated Need (Geriatrician Shortfall): Full Weight (~1.76 Points)

  • Top-Rated Geriatrics Hospitals: Full Weight (~1.76 Points)

  • Health-Care Facilities per Capita: Full Weight (~1.76 Points)

  • Quality of Public Hospitals: Full Weight (~1.76 Points) Note: This metric is based on Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ ranking of public hospitals.

  • Well-Being Index for Americans Aged 55 and Older: Full Weight (~1.76 Points)

  • Share of Adults Aged 65 & Older with Good or Better Health: Full Weight (~1.76 Points)

  • Share of Adults Aged 65 Years and Older with Poor Mental Health: Full Weight (~1.76 Points) Note: This metric refers to the share of adults 65 and older who reported their mental health was not good 14 or more days in the past 30 days.

  • Share of Adults Aged 65 & Older with a Disability: Full Weight (~1.76 Points)

  • Share of Adults Aged 65 & Older Who Are Physically Active: Full Weight (~1.76 Points)

  • Share of Adults Aged 65 and Older Who Are Obese: Full Weight (~1.76 Points)

  • Share of Adults 65 Years and Older with Inadequate Sleep: Full Weight (~1.76 Points) Note: This metric refers to the share of adults 65 and older who reported sleeping less than seven hours in a 24 hour period on average.

  • Life Expectancy: Double Weight (~3.53 Points)

  • Death Rate for Adults Aged 65 & Older: Full Weight (~1.76 Points)

Sources: Data used to create this ranking were collected from the U.S. Census Bureau, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Council for Community and Economic Research, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Retirement Living Information Center, Genworth Financial, United Health Foundation, County Health Rankings, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, Charity Navigator, Gallup Healthways, GolfLink, The Tax Foundation, America's Scenic Byways, NOAA Office for Coastal Management, U.S. News & World Report, Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, and WalletHub research.

Disclaimer: Editorial and user-generated content is not provided or commissioned by financial institutions. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone and have not been approved or otherwise endorsed by any financial institution, including those that are WalletHub advertising partners. Our content is intended for informational purposes only, and we encourage everyone to respect our content guidelines. Please keep in mind that it is not a financial institution’s responsibility to ensure all posts and questions are answered.

Originally Published, Jan 16, 2018  |  Richie Bernardo, Senior Writer

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