Tops in Texas

Here's where Austin ranks among the best-run cities in America

Here's where Austin ranks among the best-run cities in America

Austin aerial skyline with downtown
Austin is among the best in the U.S. for the quality of its city services. Photo by dszc/Getty Images

While the spotlight might be on national politics, most people see the work of the government best at the local level. It’s in that spirit that a new study ranks the best- and worst-run cities in the country, placing Austin in the middle of the pack overall but among the best based on city services.

Personal finance website WalletHub compared 150 of the largest cities in the U.S. to determine which are the best and worst managed for 2019, ranking Austin 72nd nationally.

The site measured each city’s operating efficiency by looking at its total budget per capita and the quality of its city services (broken down into six categories). While the Capital City comes in at 110th for budget, it ranks an impressive No. 10 (and No. 1 in Texas) for services. 

Among the individual quality of service categories, Austin ranks sixth in education, 17th in health, 19th in economy, and 23rd for financial stability. But there's room to improve in safety (42nd) and infrastructure and pollution (57th). 

The best-run city in Texas is Arlington at No. 27, followed by Fort Worth at No. 51. Texas' other major cities land lower. Houston ranks 73rd, just after Austin, while San Antonio comes in at No. 89 and Dallas places at No. 93. 

The best-run city in the country is Nampa, Idaho. Last on the list, ironically, is Washington, D.C.