San Bernardino County Community Indicators 2014 Report Released

Four years ago, the County of San Bernardino commissioned and published the first annual San Bernardino County Community Indicators Report, a data-driven summary on the status of the economy, health, education, public safety, environment, and quality of life in America’s largest county.

Each of those elements are key to the Countywide Vision, a set of shared goals adopted by the Board of Supervisors, San Bernardino Associated Governments, and virtually all of the county’s cities, towns and school districts in 2011 to help make San Bernardino County an attractive and prosperous place to live, work and play.

One of the primary uses for the annual Community Indicators Report is to measure San Bernardino County’s progress toward achieving its Countywide Vision.

The Vision was adopted in 2011 by the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors and the San Bernardino Associated Governments Board of Directors, following a series of community and stakeholder meetings and extensive research.

Intended as a roadmap to the future for the county as a whole, the Vision calls upon the county to capitalize on its diversity to create a broad range of opportunities that will lead to the realization of a “complete county.”

The Vision holds that the elements of that complete county – for example, education, public safety, jobs, recreation and wellbeing – are interrelated and depend on all sectors working collaboratively toward shared goals.

The first San Bernardino County Community Indicators Report was created in 2010 in anticipation of the Vision. Each successive report has become a valuable tool to measure progress toward becoming the complete county outlined in the Countywide Vision. This is the Vision:

We envision a complete county that capitalizes on the diversity of its people, its geography, and its economy to create a broad range of choices for its residents in how they live, work, and play.

We envision a vibrant economy with a skilled workforce that attracts employers who seize the opportunities presented by the county’s unique advantages and provide the jobs that create countywide prosperity.

We envision a sustainable system of high-quality education, community health, public safety, housing, retail, recreation, arts and culture, and infrastructure, in which development complements our natural resources and environment.

We envision a model community which is governed in an open and ethical manner, where great ideas are replicated and brought to scale, and all sectors work collaboratively to reach shared goals.

From our valleys, across our mountains, and into our deserts, we envision a county that is a destination for visitors and a home for anyone seeking a sense of community and the best life has to offer.

Each element is dependent on all of the others.

The economy will not prosper without a skilled and educated workforce graduating from our schools. Children cannot learn if they are not healthy and safe. Wellness and public safety depend on a healthy economy.

Since 2010, decision makers, business leaders, nonprofit organizations, community groups and citizens have used the Community Indicators Reports to determine the county’s progress on the challenges it faces and to track the progress of the Countywide Vision.

The yearly report helps promote advocacy for the county’s needs and drives stronger collaborations to address them.

This year’s report takes a look back at the data from the past four years to see how life in the county has changed.

The unemployment rate has fallen and wages have increased. Housing values have risen as foreclosure rates have dropped.

More students became eligible to attend colleges and universities.

Fewer students dropped out of school.

Citizens became more conscious of how much water they use and have tried to conserve.

The public safety community dealt with new mandates to track and rehabilitate offenders, while juvenile arrests fell.

In 2014, there are positive signs of an economic and social recovery, but there is more work to do to improve San Bernardino County and realize the promise set forth in the Countywide Vision.

Information on the Vision can be found at www.sbcounty.gov/vision.

You can download the full Community Indicators report at:

http//www.thecommunityfoundation.net

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