NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – A newly-released WalletHub study has ranked two New Mexico cities high up on a list of “Best-Run” cities. Las Cruces came in at number seven and Albuquerque was ranked 23. The study based its findings on local leadership, especially in light of the past year, transitioning from what they call the “worst of the COVID-19 pandemic” into a city closer to what it was before 2020.

The way WalletHub measured the efficiency of the leadership involved looking at how well city officials managed and spent public funds by comparing the quality of services their citizens received against the city’s total budget. Among the 150 most populated cities WalletHub looked at, six key categories were considered in their ranking: financial stability, education, health, safety, economy, and infrastructure and pollution.

Each category was evaluated using various metrics graded on a 100-point scale. Then, the overall “quality of city services” score for each city was calculated based on its weighted average across all metrics. Finally, the “quality of city services” score was divided by the “total budget per capita” and that puts together a “score per dollar spent” index, which was used to give the cities their final rank.

Las Cruces ended up with a quality of services rank of 69 with a total budget per capita of 5. The city’s financial stability was rated as 44, education was 75, health at 119, safety was 61, their economy ranking was 99, and infrastructure and pollution came in at 79.

Albuquerque’s quality of services came in at 115 with a total budget of 10. Their financial stability was ranked 92, education 117, health at 95, safety at 144, their economy came in at 89, and infrastructure and pollution rank was 5.

Nampa and Boise, ID, Fort Wayne, IN, Nashua, NH, and Lexington-Fayette, KY made up the top five best-run cities. Washington, DC was ranked at the bottom of the list, preceded by San Francisco, CA, New York, NY, Chattanooga, TN, and Cleveland, OH.