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object(Timber\Post)#3711 (44) { ["ImageClass"]=> string(12) "Timber\Image" ["PostClass"]=> string(11) "Timber\Post" ["TermClass"]=> string(11) "Timber\Term" ["object_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["custom"]=> array(5) { ["_wp_attached_file"]=> string(13) "S_1202MBS.pdf" ["wpmf_size"]=> string(6) "763091" ["wpmf_filetype"]=> string(3) "pdf" ["wpmf_order"]=> string(1) "0" ["searchwp_content"]=> string(96981) "PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY DECEMBER 2002 Public Policy Institute of California Special Survey of Orange County in collaboration with the University of California, Irvine ○○○○○ Mark Baldassare Research Director & Survey Director The Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) is a private operating foundation established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. The Institute is dedicated to improving public policy in California through independent, objective, nonpartisan research. PPIC’s research agenda focuses on three program areas: population, economy, and governance and public finance. Studies within these programs are examining the underlying forces shaping California’s future, cutting across a wide range of public policy concerns, including education, health care, immigration, income distribution, welfare, urban growth, and state and local finance. PPIC was created because three concerned citizens – William R. Hewlett, Roger W. Heyns, and Arjay Miller – recognized the need for linking objective research to the realities of California public policy. Their goal was to help the state’s leaders better understand the intricacies and implications of contemporary issues and make informed public policy decisions when confronted with challenges in the future. PPIC does not take or support positions on any ballot measure or state and federal legislation nor does it endorse or support any political parties or candidates for public office. David W. Lyon is founding President and Chief Executive Officer of PPIC. Raymond L. Watson is Chairman of the Board of Directors. Public Policy Institute of California 500 Washington Street, Suite 800 • San Francisco, California 94111 Telephone: (415) 291-4400 • Fax: (415) 291-4401 info@ppic.org • www.ppic.org Preface The Orange County Survey – a collaborative effort of the Public Policy Institute of California and the School of Social Ecology at the University of California, Irvine – is a special edition of the PPIC Statewide Survey. This is the second in an annual series of PPIC surveys of Orange County. Mark Baldassare, the director of the PPIC Statewide Survey, is the founder and director of the Orange County Annual Survey at UCI and a former UCI professor. The UCI survey was conducted 19 times from 1982 to 2000, so the Orange County Survey collaboration between PPIC and UCI that began in 2001 is an extension of earlier survey efforts. The special survey of Orange County is co-sponsored by UCI with local support from Deloitte and Touche, Pacific Life Foundation, Disneyland, Los Angeles Times, Orange County Business Council, Orange County Division of League of California Cities, Orange County Register, The Irvine Company, and United Way of Orange County. Orange County is the second most populous county in the state and one of California’s fastest growing and changing regions. The county is home to almost 2.9 million residents today, having gained nearly one million residents since 1980. Three in four residents were white and non-Hispanic in 1980; today, nearly half are Latinos and Asians. The county’s dynamic economy has become one of the leaders in the high-technology industry. The county is a bellwether county in politics and the site of many important governance issues, including a county-government bankruptcy, public controversy over the reuse plans for the closed El Toro Marine Corps Air Station, and the use and expansion of toll roads. There are also housing, transportation, and environmental concerns related to development. Public opinion findings are critical to informing discussions and resolving public debates on key issues. The purpose of this study is to inform policymakers by providing timely, accurate, and objective information about policy preferences and economic, social, and political trends. To measure changes over time, this survey of 2,007 adult residents includes questions from earlier Orange County Annual Surveys. It also includes key indicators from the PPIC Statewide Survey for comparisons with the state and regions of California. We also consider racial/ethnic, income, and political differences. The following issues are explored in this Orange County Survey: • County Conditions – What are the most important issues facing the county? How satisfied are residents with their local surroundings, local public services, and with life in Orange County in general? Compared to other regions of the state, how much of a problem are issues such as air pollution, the economy, growth, and housing in Orange County? • Public Policy – What types of infrastructure and transportation projects are considered most important for Orange County, and how do local residents feel about taxes and other funding options? How do residents feel about the Great Park plan passed by the voters in March? • Economic and Political Trends – What are the recent trends in consumer confidence, perceptions of the county’s economy, and the county’s real estate market? How do county residents rate their personal finances today? How many consider themselves among the “have-nots?” How do they rate the performance of Governor Davis and President Bush? Copies of this report may be ordered by e-mail (order@ppic.org) or phone (415-291-4400). Copies of this and earlier reports are posted on the publications page of the PPIC web site (www.ppic.org). For questions about the survey, please contact survey@ppic.org. -i- - ii - Contents Preface Press Release County Conditions Public Policy Economic and Political Trends Survey Methodology Survey Questions and Results Survey Advisory Committee i v 1 7 13 21 23 28 - iii - Press Release SPECIAL SURVEY OF ORANGE COUNTY ON THE OUTSIDE LOOKING IN: LATINOS SHARE LESS IN COUNTY’S BOUNTY BUT ARE MORE OPTIMISTIC ABOUT FUTURE Despite Strong Support for Great Park, Few Residents Plan To Use It; Orange County’s Economic Picture Brighter Than Nation’s SAN FRANCISCO, California, December 5, 2002 — Orange County’s Latino and white residents hold starkly different visions of the region’s prosperity, priorities, and politics, according to a new survey released today by the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) and UC Irvine. But despite their present anxiety about economic opportunities, Latinos remain more optimistic than the region as a whole about their own personal outlook and the county’s future. Like most Californians (61%), a majority of Orange County residents (59%) believe the state is divided into economic groups — haves and have-nots. While Orange County residents (65%) are more likely than Californians overall (60%) to say they are haves, Latinos in Orange County (51%) are more likely than Latinos in the state (47%) to view themselves as have-nots. The difference between racial/ethnic groups in Orange County is striking: 75 percent of whites say they are haves, compared to 39 percent of Latinos. On a host of related issues, the gap between Latinos and whites is yawning: • Job Security: Latinos (48%) are twice as likely as whites (23%) to be concerned that they or someone in their family will lose their job in the next year. Thirty percent of residents overall express at least some concern about job loss. • Personal Finances: 32 percent of Latinos, compared to 23 percent of whites, say they worry about money very often. Overall, 26 percent of residents worry about money very often. • Household Finances: Latinos are more than twice as likely as whites (23% to 10%) to say their household income is not enough to meet their bills and obligations; whites are twice as likely as Latinos (44% to 22%) to say they have enough household income to be able to save or buy extras. On the whole, 38 percent of residents say they have more than enough income, 49 percent just enough, and 23 percent not enough. • Home and Community: Latinos are less likely than whites to be very satisfied with their housing situation (52% to 71%) and with their neighborhood (53% to 72%). Most county residents say they are very satisfied with their home (65%) and neighborhood (66%). Vastly different perspectives lead to different priorities: When Orange County residents are asked to name the most important issue facing Orange County today, population growth and development (20%), traffic and transportation (16%), and housing (12%) are mentioned most often. However, while whites are more likely than Latinos to mention growth (25% to 8%), Latinos are more likely than whites to mention jobs and the economy (13% to 6%) and crime and gangs (12% to 3%). “The gap we see between white and Latino perceptions in Orange County is greater than in the rest of the state, and this is a cause for concern,” says PPIC Statewide Survey Director Mark Baldassare. “But consistent with statewide trends, Latinos in the county also look to the future with great optimism — more so than any other group.” Indeed, Latinos (43%) are more likely than whites (29%) or residents overall (33%) to think the county will be a better place to live in the future. They are also more likely than whites to say they will be better off a year from now than they are today (55% to 44%). Great Park: If You Build It, Will They Come? Measure A on the March 2002 ballot sparked a debate that caught the attention of most county residents: 71 percent say they know either a lot (25%) or a little (46%) about the Great Park plan. -v- Press Release And residents still appear to like what they hear: 65 percent favor the plan, including majorities in the Northern (62%) and Southern (75%) parts of the county. A strong majority (71%) also supports setting aside some of the residential development included in the Great Park plan for affordable housing. But while residents may appreciate the concept of the Great Park, few think they will use it on a regular basis. Currently, only 13 percent say they will use the park often for recreational purposes, while 44 percent say they will use it sometimes (30%) or rarely (14%), and 39 percent do not expect to use the park at all. Residents of the South County (54%), where the park would be located, are more likely than North County residents (38%) to say they will use the park at least sometimes. Perhaps because many residents do not anticipate using the park facilities on a regular basis, support for funding the Great Park project with local tax dollars is split. Currently, 49 percent say they favor funding the project with local tax dollars, while 44 percent oppose the idea. South County residents (58%) are more likely than North County residents (45%) to favor putting local tax dollars toward the project. Again, there are strong racial/ethnic differences on this public policy issue. While Latinos are less likely than whites to have heard about the Great Park plan (44% to 81%), they are more likely to support the plan when they are read a description of it (71% to 62%). Latinos (81%) also favor including affordable housing in the plan to a greater extent than whites (67%), and they are more likely to say they intend to use the park at least sometimes (50% to 38%). Finally, Latinos (58%) are also far more likely than whites (45%) to support using tax dollars to help fund the project. Economic Forecast Worse, But Beats Nation Orange County’s score of 90 on the five-question consumer confidence index — considerably higher than the national rating of 81 — is down 3 points from last year and 22 points from 2000. Today, 50 percent of county residents say their financial situation is better than a year ago, compared to 55 percent in 2001. As was true last year, residents’ gloomy view of the national economy has not influenced their attitudes about spending: 61 percent of residents (compared to 63% in 2001) say it is a good time to make large purchases. Overall ratings of the Orange County economy are also less glowing than one year ago. Today, 58 percent of residents rate the local economy as either excellent or good — a 16-point decline from 2001. One-quarter of residents also say their region is in a serious (5%) or moderate (20%) recession, while another 12 percent say it is in a mild recession. However, Orange County residents are far less negative than residents of any other region in California or of the state as a whole. Indeed, nearly 40 percent of Californians think their region is in a serious to moderate recession. Why is Orange County the most optimistic place in California? Perhaps it is the real estate market: Large majorities of homeowners (82%) and renters (73%), South County (82%) and North County (77%) residents, as well as Latinos (81%) and whites (79%) consider buying a home in Orange County an excellent or good investment. Can Local Taxes Help Solve Regional Problems? As in 2001, county residents appear very concerned about a number of growth-related issues: About half see traffic (56%) and housing affordability (48%) as big problems in their region. However, when asked what types of infrastructure projects they think should have top priority for public funds, residents overwhelmingly choose school facilities (45%) over surface transportation (27%), water (13%) or sewer (7%) systems, or airports (5%). When asked to prioritize funding for a range of surface transportation projects, more county residents choose freeways and highways (39%), with fewer selecting light rail (21%), local streets and roads (16%), public bus systems (14%), and carpool lanes (7%). Despite their concerns, a majority of residents (53%) say their local government has adequate funding for the infrastructure projects that are needed to prepare the region for future growth. As a result, there is strong support (71%) for the two-thirds majority requirement for passing local transportation taxes or extensions. And although most residents (68%) are satisfied with the way Measure M tax revenues are being used for transportation projects in the county, only 62 percent of registered voters - vi - Press Release say they would support an extension of the half-cent sales tax. Thus the extension would fail to meet the two-thirds threshold for passage. Other Key Findings • Quality of Life (page 6) When it comes to quality of life in Orange County, nine in 10 residents (89%) say that things are going very (32%) or somewhat (57%) well. County residents are more satisfied than residents of the San Francisco Bay Area or Los Angeles with their quality of life. • Local Public Services (page 3) Most Orange County residents give excellent or good ratings to their local police protection (83%), local parks, beaches and other recreational facilities (82%), local freeways, streets, and roads (66%), and local public schools (63%). Latinos are less likely than whites to give police protection high ratings (76% to 86%) but more likely to express satisfaction with public schools (72% to 60%). • Local Government Ratings (page 4) Fifty-eight percent of residents rate the performance of their city government as excellent or good. Similar to one year ago, 42 percent of residents say their county government is doing an excellent or good job. Attitudes about local government efficiency and responsiveness have also changed little: 81 percent say the county government wastes at least some of the taxpayer’s money, and only 12 percent say that county officials pay a lot of attention to what people think when making policy decisions. • Ratings for President Bush, Governor Davis (pages 19, 20) Sixty-eight percent of county residents say they approve of the job President George W. Bush is doing overall, and 57 percent approve of his performance on economic issues. Governor Gray Davis receives harsher grades: Only one-third of residents approve of his job performance overall (33%) or on economic issues (34%). Latinos are more likely than whites to approve of Davis overall (53% to 25%) and with respect to economic issues (53% to 27%). About the Survey The Special Survey of Orange County — a collaborative effort of PPIC and the School of Social Ecology at UC Irvine — is a special edition of the PPIC Statewide Survey. This is the second in an annual series of PPIC surveys of Orange County. Findings of the current survey are based on a telephone survey of 2,007 adult Orange County residents, interviewed from November 6 to November 14, 2002. Interviews were conducted in English or Spanish. The sampling error for the total sample is +/- 2%. For more information on survey methodology, see page 21. Dr. Mark Baldassare is Research Director at PPIC, where he also holds the Arjay and Frances Fearing Miller Chair in Public Policy. He is founder and director of the PPIC Statewide Survey, which he has conducted since 1998. From 1982 to 2000, Dr. Baldassare directed the Orange County Annual Survey for UC Irvine. His most recent book, A California State of Mind: The Conflicted Voter in a Changing World, is available at www.ppic.org. PPIC is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to improving public policy through objective, nonpartisan research on the economic, social, and political issues that affect Californians. The Institute was established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. PPIC does not take or support positions on any ballot measure or state and federal legislation nor does it endorse or support any political parties or candidates for public office. This report will appear on PPIC’s website (www.ppic.org) on December 5. See graphics next page. ### - vii - Percent Percent Percent Percent What is the most important issue facing Orange County today? 30 20 20 16 12 10 0 8 6 Percent EconomyHo&ujsionbgs Education trans. dev. Growth & Traffic & Percent All Adults Howdo you think things are going in terms of quality of life? (% very well) 40 32 30 21 20 16 17 10 0 Calif ornia SF Los Bay Area Angeles (Source: November 2002 Statew ide Survey) Orange County Percent All Adults Would you consider yourself a " have" or a " have-not" ? (% " haves" ) 100 87 80 65 75 60 39 40 38 20 0 All Latino White <$40K $80K+ Percent All Adults Percent What type of transportation project should have top priority for public funding? 60 39 40 20 21 16 14 0 7 roads buses Lanes Public Carpool StreetsLi&ght rail Percent All Adults Highways Are you concerned about job loss? (% very / somewhat concerned) 50 48 41 40 30 30 23 21 20 10 0 All Latino White <$40K $80K+ Percent All Adults The Great Park (% approve) North 80 75 62 60 South 58 45 71 69 40 20 0 Great Park Plan Using local tax $ Including af f ordable housing Percent All Adults County Conditions Most Important Problem When asked what they think is the most important issue facing Orange County today, residents are most likely to mention population growth and development (20%), traffic congestion (16%), and housing (12%). Other topics such as jobs and the economy (8%), schools and education (6%), crime and gangs (5%), the El Toro Marine base (4%), environment and pollution (3%), and immigration (3%) are each noted by fewer than one in 10 residents. Compared to a year ago, the most notable changes in opinion are the declining mention of the El Toro Air Base (14% to 4%)—a reflection of the fact that Orange County voters passed the Great Park plan in March 2002—and increasing mention of traffic (12% to 16%) and the economy (4% to 8%) as the most important issue. There are significant regional and racial/ethnic differences in opinion. Whites are more likely than Latinos to mention growth (25% to 8%), while Latinos are more likely than whites to mention the economy (13% to 6%) and crime (12% to 3%) as the most important issue. In the South County, population growth has now replaced the El Toro Marine Base as the focus of attention. In fact, South County residents are much more likely than those in the North County to mention growth as a problem (27% to 17%), while concerns about traffic and housing costs are fairly similar across Orange County. Mention of growth and traffic increases with education and income. Interestingly, a year after the September 11th attacks, only 1 percent of Orange County residents name terrorism and homeland security as the most important issue facing the county. To place the county’s responses in a comparative light, the PPIC Statewide Surveys conducted throughout 2002 found that Californians in general named education, the economy, and energy and electricity as the three most important issues confronting the state. "What do you think is the most important issue facing Orange County today?" Population growth and development Traffic and transportation Housing issues Jobs and the economy Schools and education Crime and gangs El Toro Marine Air Base Environment and pollution Immigration, legal and illegal Poverty, the poor, the homeless, welfare Drugs and drug abuse Government regulations Other Don’t know All Region Adults North South 20% 17% 27% 16 17 15 12 11 12 8 96 6 74 5 63 4 28 3 24 3 32 1 11 1 11 1 11 9 97 11 14 9 Race / Ethnicity White Latino 25% 8% 17 13 12 10 6 13 58 3 12 51 41 31 11 12 11 89 9 20 -1- County Conditions Regional Problems About half of the county's residents (56%) see traffic and housing affordability (48%) as big problems in the region they live in, while about one in three (34%) rate population growth and development as equally serious. Fewer county residents say that the availability of jobs (20%) or air pollution (16%) are major problems in their regions. These rankings of regional problems have changed very little in the past year. Orange County residents are somewhat more likely than Californians as a whole to rank traffic congestion, housing affordability, and population growth as big problems in their region. By contrast, Orange County residents are less likely than all Californians to see job opportunities and air pollution as big problems. Orange County residents are somewhat more worried than Los Angeles residents about housing affordability, while Los Angeles residents are more likely than Orange County residents to say that traffic, growth, jobs, and especially air pollution are big problems. San Francisco Bay Area residents are more likely than Orange County residents to mention housing affordability as a major problem. "In your region, how much of a problem is ..." Percent seeing the issue as a big problem Traffic congestion on freeways and major roads Availability of housing you can afford Population growth and development Lack of opportunities for well-paying jobs Air pollution All California* 51% 44 32 28 27 SF Bay Area* 59% 59 30 22 18 Region Los Angeles* 61% 44 37 27 38 Orange County 56% 48 34 20 16 * Results from November 2002 PPIC Statewide Survey Within Orange County, there are some significant differences in perceptions of regional problems: North County residents are more likely than those in the South County to rank traffic congestion (59% to 50%), the availability of jobs (22% to 14%), and air pollution (18% to 11%) as major problems. Perceptions of population growth and housing affordability are about the same in both regions. Perceptions also differ across racial/ethnic groups. Whites are more likely than Latinos to highlight traffic congestion (59% to 50%) and growth and development (38% to 27%) as big problems, while Latinos are more likely than whites to mention the availability of well-paying jobs (34% to 15%). Latinos and whites are fairly similar in their rankings of housing affordability and air pollution. There are also variations in the perceptions of regional problems in Orange County by age, education, and income level. Older residents tend to think that growth is a big problem, while younger residents are more likely to express concern about the lack of availability of jobs, housing affordability, and air pollution. Orange County residents with higher incomes and college educations are more likely than others to cite traffic congestion and growth as major regional issues, while those with lower incomes and no college education are more likely than others to mention the availability of jobs, affordable housing, and air pollution as big problems. -2- County Conditions "In your region, how much of a problem is ..." Percent seeing the issue as a big problem Traffic congestion on freeways and major roads Availability of housing you can afford Population growth and development Lack of opportunities for well-paying jobs Air pollution All Adults 56% 48 34 20 16 Region North South 59% 50% 48 47 34 35 22 14 18 11 Race / Ethnicity White Latino 59% 50% 49 48 38 27 15 34 16 18 Local Public Services Most Orange County residents are quite satisfied with their local public services: Eight in 10 rate their police protection (83%) and parks and beaches (82%) as excellent or good, while six in 10 give similarly positive ratings to their roads (66%) and public schools (63%). The ratings of these four public services are similar to those given a year ago and higher than they were a decade ago. South County residents give higher ratings than North County residents to all of their local public services, except schools, which receive similar assessments from residents in both regions. Latinos are considerably more positive than whites about their local schools (72% to 60%), whereas satisfaction with police protection is higher among whites than Latinos (86% to 76%), as is satisfaction with local parks (85% to 80%). Racial/ethnic differences are further emphasized by the substantially higher level of fair to poor ratings given to local police protection by Latinos compared to whites (21% to 11%). Positive ratings of local parks and police increase with education and income. Interestingly, excellent and good ratings of local public schools decline with higher education and age. Those with public school children (81%) are much more positive about the public schools than those with children not in public school (49%) and those with no children at home (55%). "How would you rate some of the public services in your local area?" Percent saying services are excellent or good Local police protection Local parks, beaches, and other public recreational facilities Local freeways, streets, and roads Local public schools All Adults 83% Region Race / Ethnicity North South White Latino 80% 88% 86% 76% 82 78 91 85 80 66 62 74 65 70 63 62 64 60 72 - 3 - December 2002 County Conditions Local Government Ratings What kind of job is local government doing when it comes to solving problems at the county and city level? County government gets an excellent or good job rating from 42 percent of Orange County residents, a rating that has remained stable over the past few years. By contrast, 58 percent think that their city government is doing an excellent or good job. Latinos are more positive than whites (54% to 39%) in rating their county government, as are residents in the North County compared to those in the South County (44% to 39%). As for city government ratings, there are no differences between whites and Latinos, but South County residents give higher rankings than North County residents (61% to 56%). County government ratings decline with education and income, while city government ratings do not vary much by these factors. County government continues to receive mixed grades when it comes to fiscal efficiency, even well after the 1994 county-government bankruptcy: 81 percent say the county government wastes at least some of the taxpayer’s money, and 35 percent say that it wastes a lot. Whites (85%) are more likely than Latinos (73%) to say that the county government wastes at least some of the taxpayer’s money. The perception that the county government wastes taxpayer money tends to increase with age, education, homeownership, and income. There are no differences in perceptions of county government inefficiency across political groups or between North and South County residents. When it comes to assessing county officials’ responsiveness to public opinion when drafting policies, many residents still complain about a lack of responsiveness (the controversy over the county’s plans to develop an airport at the El Toro Marine Base was finally resolved by local voters at the ballot box). Only 12 percent of county residents say that county officials pay a lot of attention to what people think when deciding policies; 35 percent say that county government pays very little or no attention to what people think. We found no differences across income, education, or racial/ethnic groups, or across political parties or county regions. All Region Race / Ethnicity Adults North South White Latino How would you rate the performance of county government in solving problems in Orange County? Excellent / Good Fair Poor 42% 38 12 44% 37 12 39% 40 13 39% 40 14 54% 33 8 Don't know 878 7 5 How would you rate the performance of city government in solving problems in your city? Excellent / Good 58% 56% 61% 58% 59% Fair Poor Don't know / Don’t live in city 27 27 25 26 89 6 9 78 8 7 27 7 7 -4- County Conditions Resident Satisfaction While many are concerned about the effects of traffic, growth and housing affordability on quality of life in Orange County, most residents are satisfied with their personal circumstances. Two in three report they are very satisfied with their homes (65%) and neighborhoods (66%). Three in four (77%) express at least some satisfaction with their daily commutes to and from work, while 47 percent say they are very satisfied. How does resident satisfaction in Orange County compare with the state? Based on the findings of the November 2002 Statewide Survey, Orange County residents are more likely to say they are very satisfied with their neighborhood (66% to 57%), a little more likely to say they are very satisfied with their housing (65% to 62%), and less likely to say they are very satisfied with their daily commute (47% to 54%). Satisfaction with housing and neighborhood increases with education, income, and homeownership, with at least half of the respondents in all of these groups reporting high satisfaction. South County residents are more likely than North County residents to say they are very satisfied with their housing (73% to 61%) and neighborhoods (79% to 61%), and whites are more likely than Latinos to express a high degree of satisfaction with their housing (71% to 52%) and neighborhoods (72% to 53%). Latinos are more likely than whites to report that they are not satisfied with their residence (12% to 7%) or neighborhood (13% to 7%). Eighty percent of Orange County’s employed residents report driving to work alone – a number that has changed very little since the first Orange County survey in 1982. Driving alone tends to be more prevalent among whites (84%) than Latinos (68%) and increases with age, education, and income. Residents in the North County and South County are equally likely to drive alone to work (both 80%), but satisfaction with commute is higher in South County than North County (52% to 44%). Commuting satisfaction is similar across income and racial/ethnic groups and increases with age. How satisfied are you with the house or apartment you live in? Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied How satisfied are you with the neighborhood you live in? Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied How satisfied are you with your commute to work? (employed residents only) Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied Don’t know All Region Adults North South Race / Ethnicity White Latino 65% 27 8 61% 30 9 73% 20 7 71% 22 7 52% 36 12 66% 26 8 61% 29 10 79% 17 4 72% 21 7 53% 34 13 47% 30 21 2 44% 32 22 2 52% 27 19 2 48% 27 22 3 48% 35 17 0 - 5 - December 2002 County Conditions Quality of Life The overall mood in Orange County remains upbeat, even as residents complain about regional conditions and as the nation and state continue to be mired in an economic slowdown. Ratings of the quality of life in Orange County are basically the same today as they were from the late 1990s through 2001: Approximately nine in 10 residents (89%) say things are going well in Orange County. Although this latest figure is slightly lower than the highs of the most recent years, it is still 29 percent higher than the lows of 1992-1993. "Thinking about the quality of life in Orange County, how do you think things are going – very well, somewhat well, somewhat badly, or very badly?" Very well Somewhat well Somewhat badly Very badly All California 21% 61 15 3 SF Bay Area 16% 59 20 5 Region Los Angeles 17% 63 17 3 Orange County 32% 57 9 2 One in three residents (32%) thinks that things are going very well, and another 57 percent say that things are going somewhat well. Comparing these results to the November 2002 Statewide Survey, Orange County residents are more satisfied than residents in Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area with the quality of life in their region. In Orange County, whites are more likely than Latinos (36% to 25%), and South County residents much more likely than North County residents (42% to 29%), to say things are going very well. Positive ratings of Orange County’s quality of life increase with age, education, and income. Residents are evenly divided when asked if the quality of life in the county will get better, worse, or stay the same in the future. Whites (29%) are less likely than Latinos (43%) to anticipate a better future. Similarly, South County residents (29%) are less likely than North County residents (37%) to say that the county will be a better place to live in the future. Optimism about the county’s future declines with age, education, and income. "In the future, do you think that Orange County will be a better place to live than it is now, a worse place to live than it is now, or there will be no change?" Better place Worse place No change Don’t know All Adults 33% 31 32 4 Race / Ethnicity White Latino 29% 43% 35 22 33 31 34 -6- Public Policy Infrastructure "Infrastructure" may be a commonly used term among planners and policymakers, but it is not a household word in Orange County. While six in 10 residents say they are familiar with the term "infrastructure," only one in four say they know a lot about it. A knowledge gap is particularly evident across racial/ethnic groups: 30 percent of whites are very familiar with the term, compared to only 8 percent of Latinos. Knowledge of infrastructure increases with age, income, and education. After listening to a brief definition of the term, residents highlighted school facilities (45%) as their top priority for infrastructure spending in the county. Considerably fewer mentioned surface transportation (27%), water systems (13%), sewer systems (7%), and airports (5%). These responses are similar to those of residents throughout the state, as reflected in our November 2002 Statewide Survey. Although Orange County residents cite traffic and growth issues as the county’s most pressing problems, both North (46%) and South (43%) County residents rank school facilities as the top infrastructure priority. There are no differences of opinion across political groups, but there is some variation in the strength of this priority among other groups: Women are more likely than men (51% to 38%), Latinos are more likely than whites (57% to 41%), and those with children at home are more likely than those without (54% to 38%) to see school facilities as their top infrastructure priority. "Which infrastructure project do you think should have the top priority for public funds in Orange County?" All Region Race / Ethnicity Adults North South White Latino School facilities 45% 46% 43% 41% 57% Surface transportation 27 26 29 31 15 Water systems 13 11 15 13 13 Sewer systems 7 75 7 7 Airports 5 54 5 3 Other / Don’t know 3 54 3 5 Virtually all residents see the condition of roads and other infrastructure as important to the quality of life and economic vitality in the county – 73 percent say the roads and infrastructure are very important. By comparison, 59 percent of Californians in the November 2002 Statewide Survey said that the condition of roads and other infrastructure was very important to the quality of life and economic vitality in their regions. "How important is the condition of the roads and other infrastructure to the quality of life and economic vitality in Orange County?" All Region Race / Ethnicity Adults North South White Latino Very important 73% 74% 72% 73% 77% Somewhat important 25 24 25 25 21 Not important 2 23 2 2 -7- Public Policy Surface Transportation Priorities and Funding When asked to think about funding for a range of surface transportation projects, a plurality of county residents (39%) responded that freeways and highways should have top priority. Another 7 percent gave the nod more specifically to carpool lanes. Thus, nearly half of all residents (46%) mention freeways, highways, and carpool lanes as their top choice for county attention. Fewer residents mention light rail systems (21%), local streets and roads (16%), and public bus systems (14%). Comparing these results to the November 2002 Statewide Survey, we find that Orange County residents are similar to Californians throughout the state in prioritizing freeways and highways (39% to 36%) but less inclined to note local streets and roads. Although freeways and highways are the top choice for surface transportation spending across all groups and regions in Orange County, we did find variation among some groups in prioritizing freeways and highways. For example, Republicans are more likely than Democrats (47% to 36%), whites are more likely than Latinos (42% to 27%), and residents under age 55 are more likely than older residents (41% to 33%) to think that freeways and highways should have precedence. "What type of transportation project should have the top priority for public funds in Orange County?" All Region Race / Ethnicity Adults North South White Latino Freeways and highways 39% 39% 38% 42% 27% Light rail system 21 18 27 25 9 Local streets and roads 16 17 13 14 22 Public bus system 14 15 13 11 22 Carpool lanes 7 8 6 5 15 Other / Don’t know 3 33 3 5 As noted above, residents overwhelmingly believe that roads and other infrastructure play an important role in the quality of life and economic vitality of Orange County; and they also believe that the major arteries throughout the county should have top priority when it comes to transportation funding. Are they confident that local governments in the county have the funding to maintain and prepare the county's infrastructure for the future? Most (53%) believe that local governments do have adequate funding – 31 percent think they do not. Latinos are more likely than whites, and North County residents more likely than those in the South County, to say that their local government has adequate funding. The perception that funding is inadequate increases with age, education, and income. Democrats (40%) are more likely than Republicans (33%) to think funding is inadequate. "Do you think that local government does or does not have adequate funding for the roads and other infrastructure projects that are needed to prepare Orange County for future growth?" All Region Race / Ethnicity Adults North South White Latino Does 53% 55% 49% 49% 67% Does not 31 30 33 35 22 Don’t know 16 15 18 16 11 -8- Public Policy Funding Transportation Projects Through the Local Sales Tax The local transportation sales tax (funded through Measure M in Orange County) is one of the primary means that local governments have for financing transportation projects. State law currently requires that two-thirds of the voters in a local election approve a tax increase or extension for it to pass. Although some policymakers and transportation planners have argued that this is too difficult a hurdle, 71 percent of Orange County residents (and 70% of registered voters) think the two-thirds majority requirement is a good thing. Large majorities of both North County (72%) and South County (69%) residents favor the two-thirds requirement. Residents across party affiliations and racial/ethnic, education, age, and income groups think that the current requirement is acceptable. The only significant difference of opinion about whether the two-thirds requirement is a good thing is between conservatives (77%) and liberals (65%), but both groups highly favor the current law. "Do you think that requiring a two-thirds majority vote for passing a local sales tax for local transportation projects is a good thing or a bad thing?" Good thing Bad thing Don’t know All Adults 71% 23 6 Party Registration Democrat Republican Independent 67% 72% 71% 27 24 26 64 3 The two-thirds majority requirement sets a high bar for raising local sales taxes, and in November 2000 the state’s voters supported a reduction of the two-thirds requirement for local school bonds to 55 percent. However, substantial support for the two-thirds requirement and a widespread belief that local governments have enough funding for roads and other infrastructure undermine support for a similar measure for local transportation projects. Only 43 percent of residents (and 41 percent of registered voters) say they would vote for an initiative that would change the two-thirds vote to a 55 percent requirement for transportation. There are, however, wide divisions of opinion on this initiative. Democrats are much more likely than Republicans (53% to 33%) to say they would vote to change the required level to 55 percent, as are liberals compared to conservatives (56% to 35%) and Latinos compared to whites (63% to 35%). Support for the 55 percent rule declines with age, education, homeownership, and income. "What if there was a state ballot measure that would change the two-thirds majority to a 55 percent vote for passing a local sales tax for transportation projects? Would you vote yes or no?" Yes No Don’t know All Adults 43% 50 7 Party Registration Democrat Republican Independent 53% 33% 43% 40 62 51 75 6 - 9 - December 2002 Public Policy Measure M Sales Tax Most Orange County residents today (68%) are satisfied with the way that Measure M tax revenues are being used for transportation projects in the county. Fourteen percent report being very satisfied with the allocation of these funds, another 54 percent say they are somewhat satisfied, and 18 percent say they are not satisfied. This assessment is very much in line with opinions over the past few years (for example, a 68% satisfaction rating in 2000). However, these results are markedly changed from the first ratings in 1992, when only 48 percent of the county's registered voters reported being very or somewhat satisfied with the way these funds were being used. North and South County residents are about equally satisfied with the way Measure M funds are being used (70% and 65%), as are Democrats and Republicans (69% and 64%), while Latinos are much more satisfied than whites (82% versus 64%). County residents across age, education, and income groups express satisfaction with the implementation of this local tax. When it comes to extending the Measure M sales tax beyond the current 2011 expiration date, 62 percent of all adults, as well as 62 percent of registered voters, say they would vote to continue the tax for another 20 years. Support for the extension is higher than it was in the 2000 Orange County Survey, when 55 percent of registered voters said they would vote yes on such a measure. However, even at 62 percent, the measure would fail to meet the two-thirds vote requirement. Most Democrats (71%) would vote to extend Measure M, compared to less than two-thirds of independents (60%) and barely half of Republicans (53%). There are no differences between North and South County residents. Majority, but not two-thirds, support for extending Measure M, is found among whites, homeowners, older, college educated, and higher-income residents. If the half-cent sales tax measure in Orange County were expanded to include “other infrastructure projects” as well as local transportation, 62 percent of registered voters would support it, and thus the measure would still fail to meet the two-thirds threshold for passing a local sales tax. How satisfied are you with the way Measure M funds are being used for transportation projects in Orange County? Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied Don’t know If an election were held today, would you vote yes or no on an Orange County ballot measure to extend the half-cent sales tax another 20 years? Yes No Don’t know Party Registration All Adults Democrat Republican Independent 14% 54 18 14 17% 52 17 14 11% 53 21 15 13% 60 17 10 62% 30 8 71% 22 7 53% 39 8 60% 32 8 - 10 - Public Policy The Great Park The passage of Measure A on the March 2002 ballot set in motion the “Great Park” plan at the former El Toro Marine Air Base, putting to rest a county proposal to build an airport on the site. How many Orange County residents are familiar with the Great Park? Seven in 10 say they know either a lot (25%) or a little (46%) about the plan. Residents in the South County, where the park would be located, are more likely than those in the North County to say they know a lot about the plan (35% to 21%). Eighty-one percent of whites have heard of the Great Park plan, compared to 44 percent of Latinos. Knowledge increases with age, education, income, and homeownership. When read a brief description of the Great Park plan, a solid majority of Orange County residents (65%) said they favored the plan, while 24 percent opposed it. Majorities of both whites (62%) and Latinos (71%) say they like the idea. Interestingly, while 52 percent of Latinos say they are unfamiliar with the plan, after they are read a description of it they overwhelmingly support it. South County residents greatly favor the plan (75%), while North County residents are somewhat less enthusiastic (62%). Republicans are less likely to favor the plan (59%) than Democrats (67%) or independents (68%). Similarly, conservatives (59%) are less likely to favor the plan than liberals (71%) or moderates (69%). People with children at home are more likely to support the idea than those without (71% to 62%). Support for the Great Park declines with age: 73 percent of those under age 35 favor the park, compared to 55 percent of those age 55 or older. There are no significant differences in support across education or income levels. Sixty percent of those who say they know a lot about the Great Park plan favor the idea. When residents are asked about funding for the Great Park with their local tax dollars, support levels decline considerably, although the level of decline varies by demographic group. About half of all residents (49%) favor using their local tax dollars to fund the park, while 44 percent are opposed to the idea. South County residents are more likely than North County residents (58% to 45%), and Latinos are more likely than whites (58% to 45%), to support the idea of directing local tax dollars toward the park. Majorities of liberals (57%) and moderates (51%) support this approach, while a majority of conservatives (52%) oppose it. Democrats (55%) are more likely than independents (48%) and Republicans (40%) to favor using taxes. People with children at home are more likely than those without children at home to lean toward directing local tax dollars to the park (53% to 46%). Support for using taxes for this purpose declines with age: Residents under age 35 are more likely than those age 55 and older to favor the idea (56% to 38%). Do you favor or oppose the Great Park plan? Favor Oppose Don't know Do you favor or oppose using your local tax dollars to help fund the Great Park project? Favor Oppose Don't know All Adults Region Race / Ethnicity North South White Latino 65% 24 11 62% 27 11 75% 19 6 62% 28 10 71% 16 13 49% 44 7 45% 47 8 58% 36 6 45% 48 7 58% 34 8 - 11 - December 2002 Public Policy Seven in 10 Orange County residents favor setting aside some of the residential development in the Great Park for affordable housing. While the lack of substantial opposition across groups is evident, there are differences in levels of support for including affordable housing. Latinos are more supportive of the idea than whites (81% versus 67%), and renters are more supportive than homeowners (80% versus 65%). The idea also has more support among lower-income residents: 80 percent of those making under $40,000 a year favor affordable housing at the site, compared to 64 percent of those who have an annual salary of $80,000 or more. The same is true for younger residents and those with less education: Residents under age 35 are more likely than those age 35 and older to favor the affordable housing set-aside (77% versus 67%), and residents with no college education are more likely than college graduates to like the idea (76% versus 67%). In addition, those who have lived in their current residence less than five years are more supportive of the setaside than those who have lived at their residence longer (75% to 66%). Along political lines, Democrats (75%) are more likely than Republicans (62%) to support the idea. Overall, people who think that affordable housing is a big problem in Orange County are more likely than those who do not think it is a problem to favor affordable housing as part of the Great Park plan (75% to 63%). While residents may appreciate the concept of the Great Park, few think they will visit it often. Although more than half of Orange County residents (57%) say they expect to use the Great Park for recreational purposes, only 13 percent plan to use it often. Thirty percent say they will visit it sometimes, and 14 percent say they will visit it rarely. Thirty-nine percent do not expect to use the park at all. Focusing on those who expect to use the park either often or sometimes reveals some rather substantial variations. Latinos are more likely than whites (50% to 38%), and South County residents are more likely than North County residents (54% to 38%), to say they will use the park at least sometimes. Residents under age 35 (49%) are more likely than those age 55 and older (29%) to say they will often or sometimes use the park. People with children in their households are much more likely to say they will use the park than those without children at home (52% to 38%). Renters are also more likely than homeowners to use the park, as are those who have lived at their residence less than five years compared to longer-term residents. There are no major differences by gender, education, or income. All Adults Would you favor or oppose setting aside some of the residential development included in the Great Park plan for affordable housing? Favor Oppose Don't know Do you think you will use the Great Park for recreational purposes? Yes, often Yes, sometimes Yes, rarely No Don’t know 71% 25 4 13% 30 14 39 4 Region Race / Ethnicity North South White Latino 71% 25 4 69% 27 4 67% 29 4 81% 15 4 10% 28 15 42 5 19% 35 10 32 4 11% 27 12 46 4 15% 35 20 24 6 - 12 - Economic and Political Trends Consumer Confidence Consumer confidence in Orange County has not recovered from its sharp dive in 2001. The Orange County Consumer Confidence Index now stands at 90, registering a 3-point decline since last year and a 22-point decline since 2000. Still, the Orange County index is higher than the national index, which recently stood at 81, after declining 11 points since 2001 and 28 points since 2000. The Consumer Confidence Index for Orange County is calculated using a nationally recognized formula provided by the University of Michigan, which computes scores for each of five questions, then adjusts for the 1966 base period. A score above 100 on the Confidence Index is considered very good; the average national score over the past 50 years is 85. Findings for the individual items that make up the Orange County index: • The greatest decline since last year is in the perception of personal finances, as they relate to the previous year. Today, 50 percent of Orange County residents say their financial situation is better than in 2001, and 30 percent say it is worse. Last year, 55 percent said they were better off financially than in the previous year, and 21 percent said they were worse off. • The percentages saying they will be better off next year (47%) and saying they will be worse off (8%) have changed very little since 2001. Fewer people today (41%) than in 2001 (45%) expect their current financial condition to remain the same. • Orange County residents continue to be uncertain about the U.S. economy over the next 12 months: 47 percent expect good economic times and 44 percent expect bad economic times. Last year, a similar 48 percent expected good times and 45 percent expected bad times. • The long-term outlook for the U.S. economy remains as mixed today as it was last year: 46 percent anticipate good economic times over the next five years, while 44 percent expect bad times. One year ago, 46 percent predicted good times, and 45 percent expected bad times. • Orange County residents remain bullish on buying, despite their mixed outlook on personal finances and the economy. Today, 61 percent of residents think that this is a good time to make major purchases, while just 28 percent call it a bad time. Last year, 63 percent thought that it was a good time to buy, and 26 percent thought it was a bad time. In general, higher-income residents express more economic confidence than lower-income residents. Whites are more likely than Latinos to expect the economy to be in good shape five years from now (50% to 38%) and to consider today a good time to make major purchases (66% to 52%). Nonetheless, when it comes to personal finances, Latinos are more likely than whites to say that they are better off now than a year ago (57% to 46%) and that they will be better off a year from now than today (55% to 44%). Five-Question Consumer Confidence Index All Adults Orange County United States ‘86 ‘87 ‘88 ‘89 ‘90 ‘91 ‘92 ‘93 ‘94 ‘95 ‘96 ‘97 ‘98 ‘99 ‘00 ‘01 ‘02 109 104 106 105 85 84 75 73 89 90 101 110 105 111 112 93 90 92 94 95 96 76 82 77 75 92 94 95 107 100 105 109 92 81 Source for Orange County from 1986 to 2000 is Orange County Annual Survey at UCI by Mark Baldassare and Cheryl Katz. Source for the United States is the University of Michigan; October 2002 figures were the most current at time of publication. - 13 - Economic and Political Trends County Economy Overall ratings of the Orange County economy are much less glowing than last year, although still in positive territory. Today, 58 percent of residents rate the Orange County economy as either excellent or good – a 16-point decline from last year and the least upbeat assessment since 1996. Still, ratings of the county’s economy are much more positive than they were between 1992 and 1996; and today, only 6 percent of Orange County residents think their economy is in poor shape. Ratings of the county economy are more positive among residents with higher incomes. Those with incomes of $80,000 or more are more likely than those with incomes below $40,000 to say that the Orange County economy is excellent or good (70% to 49%). Nonetheless, nearly half of the residents in the less affluent groups also rate the county’s economy as excellent or good. Whites are more likely than Latinos (62% to 50%), and South County residents are more likely than North County residents (67% to 54%), to rate the county economy in positive terms. One-quarter of the residents in Orange County think that their economy is in a serious to moderate recession, and another 12 percent say it is in a mild recession. About one in four adults in North County (28%) and South County (21%) and among Latinos (28%) and whites (25%) believe that the county is in a moderate to serious recession. Still, most residents (54%) do not think the county is experiencing this kind of economic trouble. The residents most likely to say that the county is in a serious to moderate recession are those with only a high-school diploma (29%) and those with incomes below $40,000 (31%). However, county residents appear less negative than residents of the state as a whole. For example, in the November 2002 Statewide Survey, nearly 40 percent of Californians thought their region was in a serious to moderate recession. "In general, how would you rate the economy in Orange County today?" All Adults Excellent / Good Fair Poor Don't know 1992 19% 52 28 1 1993 20% 49 30 1 1994 28% 54 17 1 1995 19% 50 30 1 1996 44% 45 10 1 1997 63% 32 4 1 1998 76% 20 3 1 1999 78% 19 2 1 2000 79% 17 2 2 2001 74% 21 4 1 2002 58% 34 6 2 Source for Orange County from 1992 to 2000 is the Orange County Annual Survey at UCI by Mark Baldassare and Cheryl Katz. "Would you say that [your region / Orange County] is in an economic recession or not?" (If yes: "Do you think it is in a serious, moderate, or mild recession?") All California Yes, serious recession Yes, moderate recession Yes, mild recession No Don’t know 13% 23 11 49 4 SF Bay Area 26% 25 13 34 2 Region Los Angeles 11% 26 10 49 4 Orange County 5% 20 12 54 9 - 14 - Economic and Political Trends Real Estate Market While stock market values have fallen, and Orange County median home values have climbed in the past year, a large majority of county residents see the purchase of a home in Orange County as an excellent or good investment. Among homeowners, 82 percent think that buying a home in the county is an excellent or good investment; 11 percent say it would be a fair investment; and only 6 percent think it would be a poor investment. This positive assessment by homeowners is unchanged from a year ago, and the scores in the past few years are significantly higher than in the early-to-mid 1990s. Among renters, 73 percent now believe that buying a home in the county is an excellent or good investment (up 3 points since last year); 15 percent consider it a fair investment; and 11 percent think it would be a poor investment. Over the past two years, renters have become much more bullish on the value of buying a home in Orange County than they were throughout the period from 1993 to 2000. In fact, renters now more closely resemble homeowners in their views on the value of owning a home (73% to 82%). Previously, renters were much less likely than homeowners to say that buying an Orange County home would be an excellent or good investment. As for regional differences, homeowners in the South County (86%) are more likely than homeowners in the North County (80%) to say that owning a home is an excellent or good investment. Renters in both regions are nearly equally likely to say that owning a home in Orange County would be an excellent or good investment (North, 73%; South, 74%). Interestingly, Latinos (81%) are as likely as whites (79%) to rate buying a home in Orange County as an excellent or a good investment. This is despite the fact that whites are almost twice as likely as Latinos to own a home (70% to 37%) and that homeownership itself generally fosters a somewhat more upbeat assessment of the value of buying a home in Orange County. "Do you think that buying a home in Orange County is an excellent, good, fair, or poor investment?" All Adults Homeowners 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 Excellent / Good Fair Poor 59% 26 14 57% 28 14 50% 31 18 60% 30 8 70% 23 6 75% 18 5 75% 19 5 75% 18 5 83% 11 5 82% 11 6 Don't know 1112121211 Renters Excellent / Good 53% 47% 41% 45% 56% 61% 56% 57% 70% 73% Fair 25 30 32 34 29 25 27 25 17 15 Poor 20 20 25 17 9 12 13 15 11 11 Don't know 2324624321 Source for Orange County from 1993 to 2000 is the Orange County Annual Survey at UCI by Mark Baldassare and Cheryl Katz. - 15 - December 2002 Economic and Political Trends Personal Finance How do Orange County residents feel about their personal financial situation? Nearly one in four say they are very satisfied, and another half say they are at least somewhat satisfied with their finances. In the September 2002 Statewide Survey, a similar 25 percent of Californians were very satisfied and 50 percent were somewhat satisfied with their finances. In Orange County, whites are more likely than Latinos (27% to 21%) to indicate that they are very satisfied with their finances, largely reflecting income differences across racial/ethnic groups. Only one in 10 residents with annual household incomes of $80,000 or more express dissatisfaction with their financial situation, compared to one-third of those with incomes under $40,000. Financial satisfaction is also higher among college graduates, homeowners, those age 55 and older, and South County residents. "In general, how satisfied are you with your current financial situation?" Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied All Adults 24% 55 21 Annual Household Income <$40K $40,00079,999 $80K+ 13% 18% 39% 53 61 51 34 21 10 Race / Ethnicity White 27% 53 20 Latino 21% 56 23 About four in ten Orange County residents indicate that they have enough income to save money or buy goods and services beyond bare necessities; half say they make just enough to make ends meet; and 13 percent say they do not make enough to meet their bills and obligations. These Orange County numbers are comparable to the California results in the September 2002 Statewide Survey. Residents’ perceptions that their incomes are more than sufficient to meet their needs increase sharply with income. For example, 13 percent of those with incomes below $40,000 say that they have extra income, compared to 65 percent of those with incomes of $80,000 or more. Whites are twice as likely as Latinos (44% to 22%) to say they have more than enough income to meet their needs, and South County residents are more likely than North County residents (45% to 34%) to say they have more than enough. The perception of financial comfort for Orange County residents increases with age and education. "Thinking about your household income, would you say that you have more than enough, so that you can save money or buy some extras, just enough to meet your bills and obligations, or not enough to meet your bills and obligations?" More than enough Just enough Not enough All Adults 38% 49 13 Annual Household Income <$40K $40,00079,999 $80K+ 13% 35% 65% 59 56 31 28 9 4 Race / Ethnicity White 44% 46 10 Latino 22% 55 23 - 16 - Economic and Political Trends More than half of Orange County residents (55%) worry about money at least fairly often. One in 10 say they never worry about money. These results are nearly identical to those of a decade ago, when we asked the question in the 1992 Orange County Annual Survey. Today, four in 10 county residents (39%) with household incomes of under $40,000 very often worry about money, compared to only 15 percent of those with household incomes of $80,000 or more. Latinos are more likely than whites (32% to 23%), women somewhat more likely than men (28% to 23%), and those under age 35 more likely than those age 55 and older (30% to 17%) to say they very often worry about money. Similarly, those with no college education are more likely than college graduates (34% to 20%), and renters are more likely than homeowners (35% to 20%), to say they worry a lot about money. People with children are also more likely than those without children (29% to 23%) to worry a lot about money. Reflecting the income differences across regions, North County residents are more likely than those in the South County to say they worry about money very often (28% to 21%). "How often do you worry about money?" Very often Fairly often Not too often Never All Adults 26% 29 36 9 Annual Household Income $40,000 <$40K 79,999 $80K + 39% 25% 15% 27 30 31 27 39 41 7 6 13 Race / Ethnicity White 23% 29 37 11 Latino 32% 28 35 5 Three in ten Orange County residents are either very concerned (14%) or somewhat concerned (16%) that they or someone in their family will lose their job in the next year. Similarly, 27 percent of Californians expressed at least some concern about job loss in the September 2002 Statewide Survey. In Orange County, Latinos (48%) are twice as likely as whites (23%) to express at least some concern about future unemployment. Concern about unemployment declines with income: 41 percent of those with incomes under $40,000 worry about a job loss, compared to 21 percent of those with incomes of $80,000 or more. The belief that the loss of a job might occur in the immediate family over the next year is higher among younger residents, those without any college education, renters, those with children in the home, and those who live in the North County. "Are you concerned that you or someone in your family will lose their job in the next year or not?" (If yes: "Are you very concerned or somewhat concerned?") Yes, very concerned Yes, somewhat concerned No / Don’t know All Adults 14% 16 70 Annual Household Income <$40K $40,00079,999 $80K+ 21% 13% 8% 20 15 13 59 72 79 Race / Ethnicity White 11% 12 77 Latino 21% 27 52 - 17 - December 2002 Economic and Political Trends Economic Inequality Recent demographic reports have focused attention on the income trends of the poor and the wealthy in the state today. Nearly six in 10 Orange County residents believe that California is divided into economic groups – the haves and have-nots. Thirty-seven percent do not believe this is the case. The percentage of county residents who perceive this division is nearly identical to the 61 percent of all Californians who reported this perception in the September 2002 Statewide Survey. Majorities of Orange County residents of all racial/ethnic groups, ages, educational attainment, and levels of income believe that the state is divided into economic groups. There are no differences in this perception between Latinos and whites, North and South County residents, and homeowners and renters. However, there are strong partisan and political differences: 66 percent of Democrats compared to 51 percent of Republicans, and 71 percent of liberals compared to 49 percent of conservatives, believe that the state is divided into economic groups. "Some people think that California is divided into economic groups – the haves and have-nots – while others think it is not divided that way. Do you think that California is divided into haves and have-nots, or do you think that California is not divided that way?" Divided into haves and have-nots Not divided that way Don’t know All Adults 59% 37 4 Annual Household Income <$40K $40,00079,999 $80K+ 62% 62% 56% 34 34 41 443 Race / Ethnicity White 60% 38 2 Latino 58% 37 5 When asked if they thought of themselves as in the have or have-not group, two in three Orange County residents considered themselves to be in the have group, and one in four thought they were among the have-nots. In the September 2002 PPIC Statewide Survey, 60 percent of Californians described themselves as haves, and 32 percent said they were among the have-nots. Responses to this question revealed a wide racial/ethnic gap: 75 percent of whites think of themselves as in the have group, while 51 percent of Latinos consider themselves to be have-nots. Nearly nine in 10 residents (87%) with annual household incomes of $80,000 or more rank themselves among the haves, compared to only 38 percent of those with incomes under $40,000. Homeowners and renters also have sharply different views when it comes to placing themselves in the have group (76% to 46%). Residents’ perceptions of being have-nots declines with age (36% of those under age 35 versus 15% of those age 55 and older) and education (47% of those with no college versus 14% of college graduates). South County residents are more likely than North County residents (73% to 61%) to consider themselves in the have group. "If you had to choose, which of these groups are you in – the haves or the have-nots?" Haves Have-nots Don’t know All Adults 65% 27 8 Annual Household Income <$40K $40,000 79,999 $80K + 38% 69% 87% 54 23 7 886 Race / Ethnicity White 75% 17 8 Latino 39% 51 10 - 18 - Economic and Political Trends Approval Ratings of the Governor Governor Gray Davis is not especially popular in Orange County today: 33 percent of the county's residents approve of his performance in office; 60 percent disapprove. In the November 2002 election, 35 percent of Orange county residents voted for Governor Davis, the incumbent Democrat, while 58 percent voted for his Republican challenger, Bill Simon. By comparison, in the October 2002 Statewide Survey, 52 percent of Californians approved and 43 percent disapproved of the governor’s overall performance in office. The governor’s approval ratings are only marginally higher among Orange County residents when they are asked more specifically about his handling of jobs and the economy: 34 percent approve and 55 percent disapprove. By comparison, in the September 2002 Statewide Survey, 45 percent of Californians approved and 40 percent disapproved of his handling of economic issues. In Orange County last year, Governor Davis’ overall approval ratings were somewhat higher than they are today: 40 percent approved and 53 percent disapproved of his overall performance in office. However, residents were highly negative of his handling of the state’s electricity problem (31 percent approved and 63 percent disapproved of the may he managed this issue). A major reason why Davis receives higher negative ratings in Orange County, compared to the state as a whole, is because of the partisan nature of the ratings. Orange County is more Republican than Democratic in voter registration, while the state as a whole is more Democratic than Republican. In Orange County, Republicans are highly negative in their ratings of Governor Davis’ overall performance and his specific performance in handling the economy. However, a solid majority of independents hold negative views of Davis as well, and only about half of his fellow Democrats approve of his job performance. Compared to a year ago, Davis’ overall approval ratings have declined across the political spectrum. Latinos are more than twice as likely as whites to approve of Davis’ handling of his job overall (53% to 25%) and with respect to economic issues (53% to 27%). Davis’ approval ratings, both overall and on economic issues, decline with age, education, homeownership, and income. South County residents are less likely than North County residents to approve of the job Davis is doing, both overall (27% to 36%) and on the economy (28% to 36%). All Party Registration Adults Democrat Republican Independent Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Gray Davis is handling his job as governor? Approve 33% 47% 14% 33% Disapprove 60 46 81 62 Don’t know 77 5 5 Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Davis is handling the issue of jobs and the economy in California? Approve 34% 47% 17% 33% Disapprove 55 42 73 57 Don’t know 11 11 10 10 - 19 - December 2002 Economic and Political Trends Approval Ratings of the President While Orange County residents are not particularly positive about their Democratic governor, they have shown increasing support for the Republican president. Prior to September 11th, 57 percent of Orange County residents said that they approved of the way George W. Bush was handling his job as president. Over the past year, that support has grown; and today, 68 percent of Orange County residents, and the same proportion of registered voters, say that they approve of the way President Bush is handling his job. By comparison, the October 2002 Statewide Survey showed that 60 percent of Californians approved and 36 percent disapproved of the president’s performance in office. A Gallup Poll conducted in November found that 68 percent of Americans approved and 27 percent disapproved of his performance in office, so these national ratings of the president are very similar to what we find in Orange County. There is a partisan split in residents’ perceptions of President Bush – as dramatic as (but less harsh than) their assessments of Governor Davis. Fewer than half of Orange County Democrats (46%), sixty percent of independents, and nearly nine in ten Republicans (89%) approve of Bush’s job performance. The president’s support, unlike the governor’s lower approval ratings, is consistent across different racial/ethnic groups, with two-thirds of both Latinos (67%) and whites (70%) expressing support for how he is handling his job as president. Bush’s overall approval ratings are fairly consistent across age, income, and education levels. Orange County residents are more guarded, however, in their assessment of Bush’s handling of economic issues. While more than half of all residents (57%) and registered voters (58%) say they support the way he has handled the economy, these ratings are lower than his overall support. Partisan divisions are again evident: One in three Democrats, about half of independents, and three in four Republicans say they approve of the president’s handling of economic issues. Conservatives are about twice as likely as liberals (76% to 37%) to approve of the president’s efforts in this area. Latinos and whites (58% to 59%) are equally supportive. Bush’s approval ratings on this issue are fairly constant across age, gender, income, and education. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that George W. Bush his handling his job as President of the United States? Approve Disapprove Don’t know Do you approve or disapprove of the way that President Bush is handling economic issues? Approve Disapprove Don’t know All Adults Party Registration Democrat Republican Independent 68% 27 5 46% 48 6 89% 9 2 60% 35 5 57% 37 6 35% 61 4 78% 16 6 49% 46 5 - 20 - Survey Methodology The Orange County Survey is a special edition of the PPIC Statewide Survey, which is directed by Mark Baldassare, research director at the Public Policy Institute of California, with assistance in research and writing from Jon Cohen, survey research manager, and Dorie Apollonio and Eliana Kaimowitz, survey research associates. The survey was conducted in collaboration with the School of Social Ecology at the University of California, Irvine; however, the survey methodology and questions and the content of this report were solely determined by Mark Baldassare. The findings of this survey are based on a telephone survey of 2,007 Orange County adult residents interviewed from November 6 to November 14, 2002. Interviewing took place on weekend days and weekday nights, using a computer-generated random sample of telephone numbers, ensuring that both listed and unlisted telephone numbers were called. All telephone exchanges in Orange County were eligible for calling. Telephone numbers in the survey sample were called up to five times to increase the likelihood of reaching eligible households. Once a household was reached, an adult respondent (18 or older) was randomly chosen for interviewing by using the “last birthday method” to avoid biases in age and gender. Each interview took an average of 20 minutes to complete. Interviewing was conducted in English or Spanish. Casa Hispana translated the survey into Spanish. We used recent U.S. Census and state figures to compare the demographic characteristics of the survey sample with characteristics of Orange County's adult population. The survey sample was closely comparable to the census and state figures. The survey data in this report were statistically weighted to account for any demographic differences. The sampling error for the total sample of 2,007 adults is +/- 2 percent at the 95 percent confidence level. This means that 95 times out of 100, the results will be within 2 percentage points of what they would be if all Orange County adults were interviewed. The sampling error for subgroups is larger. Sampling error is just one type of error to which surveys are subject. Results may also be affected by factors such as question wording, question order, and survey timing. Throughout the report, we refer to two geographic regions. North County refers to cities and communities north of the 55 Freeway, including Anaheim, Anaheim Hills, Brea, Buena Park, Costa Mesa, Cypress, Fountain Valley, Fullerton, Garden Grove, Huntington Beach, La Habra, La Palma, Los Alamitos, Midway City, Orange, Placentia, Rossmoor, Santa Ana, Seal Beach, Stanton, Sunset Beach, Tustin, Villa Park, Westminster, and Yorba Linda. South County refers to cities and communities south of the 55 Freeway, including Aliso Viejo, Capistrano Beach, Corona del Mar, Coto de Caza, Dana Point, El Toro, Irvine, Laguna Beach, Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, Laguna Woods, Lake Forest, Mission Viejo, Modjeska, Newport Beach, Portola Hills, Rancho Santa Margarita, San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano, Trabuco, and Trabuco Canyon. We present results for non-Hispanic whites (referred to in the tables and text as “whites”), Latinos, and Asians because each group accounts for a substantial number of the county’s adult population. We also contrast the opinions of registered Democrats and Republicans with those who are “independent” or decline to state. In some cases, we compare the Orange County Survey responses to responses in the 1982-2000 Orange County Annual Surveys at the University of California, Irvine; the PPIC Statewide Surveys, including the Special Survey of Orange County in 2001; Gallup Poll (November 2002); Washington Post-Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation-Harvard University survey (March 2001); NBC-Wall Street Journal Poll (September 1999) and the Index of Consumer Sentiment, Surveys of Consumer Attitudes, Survey Research Center, University of Michigan (October 2002). - 21 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY: SPECIAL SURVEY OF ORANGE COUNTY NOVEMBER 6—NOVEMBER 14, 2002 2,007 CALIFORNIA ADULT RESIDENTS; ENGLISH AND SPANISH MARGIN OF ERROR +/- 2% AT 95% CONFIDENCE LEVEL FOR TOTAL SAMPLE 1. First, I would like to ask you some questions about where you live. Is the place you currently live a single-family detached home; an attached home such as a condo, duplex, or town home; an apartment; or another type of dwelling? 56% single-family detached home 20 attached home 22 apartment 1 trailer / mobile home 1 other (specify) 2. How long have you lived at your current address— less than five years, five years to under 10 years, 10 years to under 20 years, or 20 years or more? 50% less than five years 21 five years to under 10 years 14 10 years to under 20 years 15 20 years or more 3. Do you own or rent your current residence? 61% own 38 rent 1 neither (volunteered) 4. Overall, how satisfied are you with the house or apartment you live in? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied? 65% very satisfied 27 somewhat satisfied 6 somewhat dissatisfied 2 very dissatisfied 5. And, overall, how satisfied are you with the neighborhood you live in? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied? 66% very satisfied 26 somewhat satisfied 5 somewhat dissatisfied 3 very dissatisfied Next, I’d like to ask how you would rate some of the public services in your local area. For each one, please tell me if you think they are excellent, good, fair, or poor. (rotate questions 6 to 9) 6. How about local freeways, streets, and roads? 19% excellent 47 good 24 fair 10 poor 7. How about local parks, beaches, and other public recreational facilities? 34% excellent 48 good 13 fair 3 poor 2 don’t know 8. How about local police protection? 37% excellent 46 good 11 fair 4 poor 2 don’t know 9. How about local public schools? 25% excellent 38 good 12 fair 5 poor 20 don’t know 10. Overall, how would you rate the performance of city government in solving problems in your city— excellent, good, fair, or poor? 11% excellent 47 good 27 fair 8 poor 1 don’t live in city (volunteered) 6 don’t know Next, we are interested in your opinions about the region or broader geographic area that you live in. I am going to read you a list of problems other people have told us about. For each one, please tell me if you think this is a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem in your part of Orange County. (rotate questions 11 to 15) 11. How about traffic congestion on freeways and major roads? 56% big problem 34 somewhat of a problem 9 not a problem 1 don’t know 12. How about population growth and development? 34% big problem 35 somewhat of a problem 29 not a problem 2 don’t know - 23 - 13. How about the availability of housing that you can afford? 48% big problem 29 somewhat of a problem 20 not a problem 3 don’t know 14. How about the lack of opportunities for well-paying jobs? 20% big problem 33 somewhat of a problem 37 not a problem 10 don’t know 15. How about air pollution? 16% big problem 40 somewhat of a problem 43 not a problem 1 don’t know 16. Next, we are interested in your opinions about Orange County as a whole. First, what do you think is the most important issue facing Orange County today? (code response, do not read list) 20% population growth, development, sprawl 16 traffic and transportation 12 housing costs, housing availability, housing affordability 8 jobs, the economy, unemployment 6 schools, education 5 crime, gangs 4 El Toro Marine Air base 3 environment and pollution 3 immigration, illegal immigration 1 poverty, the poor, homeless, welfare 1 drugs and drug abuse 1 government regulations 1 terrorism, security issues, bioterrorism, anthrax 8 other (specify) 11 don’t know 17. Thinking about the quality of life in Orange County, how do you think things are going—very well, somewhat well, somewhat badly, or very badly? 32% very well 57 somewhat well 9 somewhat badly 2 very badly 18. In the future, do you think that Orange County will be a better place to live than it is now, a worse place to live than it is now, or there will be no change? 33% better place 31 worse place 32 no change 4 don’t know 19. On another topic, how would you rate the performance of county government in solving problems in Orange County—excellent, good, fair, or poor? 5% excellent 37 good 38 fair 12 poor 8 don’t know 20. When your county government’s officials decide what policies to adopt, how much attention do you think they pay to what the people think—a lot, some, very little, or no attention? 12% a lot 49 some 28 very little 7 no attention 4 don’t know 21. In general, do you think the people who run the county government waste a lot, some, very little, or none of the money we pay in taxes? 35% waste a lot 46 waste some 10 waste very little 2 waste none 7 don’t know 22. On another topic, are you familiar with the Great Park Plan for the reuse of the El Toro Marine Base? (if yes: Do you know a lot or little about it?) 25% yes, a lot 46 yes, a little 29 no 23. As you may know, the Great Park Plan will turn the El Toro Marine Base into an urban park including both open space and recreational facilities. The plan also leaves about 15 percent of the land for commercial and residential development. Do you favor or oppose the Great Park plan? 65% favor 24 oppose 11 don’t know 24. Do you favor or oppose using your local tax dollars to help fund the Great Park project? 49% favor 44 oppose 7 don’t know - 24 - 25. Would you favor or oppose setting aside some of the residential development included in the Great Park plan for affordable housing? 71% favor 25 oppose 4 don’t know 26. And do you think that you will use the Great Park for recreational purposes? (if yes: Do you think you will use it often, sometimes, or rarely?) 13% yes, often 30 yes, sometimes 14 yes, rarely 39 no 4 don’t know 27. Next, I am going to ask you about a term that not everyone will have heard of. Have you heard about “infrastructure?” (if yes: Do you know a lot or a little about it?) 24% yes, a lot 36 yes, a little 40 no 28. You may know the term “infrastructure” refers to public works projects—such as surface transportation, water systems, school facilities, sewers, and airports. Which infrastructure project do you think should have the top priority for public funds in Orange County? (read list, rotate) 45% school facilities 27 surface transportation 13 water systems 7 sewer systems 5 airports 1 other (specify) 2 don’t know 29. What type of transportation project do you think should have the top priority for public funds in Orange County? (read list, rotate) 39% freeways and highways 21 light rail system 16 local streets and roads 14 public bus system 7 carpool lanes 3 don’t know 30. How important is the condition of the roads and other infrastructure to the quality of life and economic vitality in Orange County—very important, somewhat important, or not important? 73% very important 25 somewhat important 2 not important 31. Overall, do you think that local government does or does not have adequate funding for the roads and other infrastructure projects that are needed to prepare Orange County for future growth? 53% does 31 does not 16 don’t know 32. The local sales tax that is collected by local governments is one of the major funding sources for local transportation projects, and state law requires that it must be approved by two-thirds of the voters in a local election. Do you think that requiring a two-thirds majority vote—instead of a simple majority or 50 percent-plus-one vote—for passing a local sales tax for local transportation projects is a good thing or a bad thing? 71% good thing 23 bad thing 6 don'tknow 33. What if there was a state ballot measure that would change the two-thirds majority to a 55 percent vote for passing a local sales tax for transportation projects? Would you vote yes or no? 43% yes 50 no 7 don’t know 34. Measure M, the one-half cent sales tax approved by voters in Orange County, funds freeway projects, public transit, and local street improvements. In general, how satisfied are you with the way the Measure M funds are being used for transportation projects in Orange County— very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, or not satisfied? 14% very satisfied 54 somewhat satisfied 18 not satisfied 14 don’t know 35. Currently, the Measure M sales tax is set to expire in 2011. However, this tax can be extended beyond 2011 by a countywide vote. If an election were held today, would you vote yes or no on an Orange County ballot measure to extend the half-cent sales tax for local transportation projects for another 20 years to fund transportation projects in Orange County? 62% yes 30 no 8 don’t know 36. What if this half-cent local sales tax measure in Orange County included funding for both transportation projects and other infrastructure projects? If an election were held today, would you vote yes or no? 62% yes 29 no 9 don’t know - 25 - December 2002 37. On another topic, would you say you (and your family) are financially better off or worse off than you were a year ago? 50% better off 30 worse off 19 same 1 don’t know 38. Looking ahead, do you think that a year from now you (and your family) will be financially better off, worse off, or just about the same as now? 47% better off 8 worse off 41 same 4 don’t know 39. Turning to business conditions in the country as a whole, do you think that during the next 12 months we will have good times financially or bad times? 47% good times 44 bad times 9 don’t know 40. Looking ahead, in the country as a whole, will we have continued good times during the next 5 years, or will we have periods of widespread unemployment or depression? 46% good times 44 periods of unemployment or depression 10 don’t know 41. Thinking about the big things that people buy for their homes, such as furniture, a refrigerator, a stove, a television, and things like that, generally speaking, do you think now is a good or a bad time for people to buy major household items? 61% good time 28 bad time 11 don’t know 42. Do you think that buying a home in Orange County is an excellent, good, fair, or poor investment? 35% excellent 44 good 12 fair 8 poor 1 don’t know 43. In general, how satisfied are you with your current financial situation? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, or not satisfied? 24% very satisfied 55 somewhat satisfied 21 not satisfied 44. Thinking about your household income, would you say that you have more than enough so that you can save money or buy some extras, just enough to meet your bills and obligations, or not enough to meet your bills and obligations? 38% more than enough 49 just enough 13 not enough 45. How often do you worry about money—very often, fairly often, not too often, or never? 26% very often 29 fairly often 36 not too often 9 never 46. In general, how would you rate the economy in Orange County today? Would you say it is excellent, good, fair, or poor? 8% excellent 50 good 34 fair 6 poor 2 don’t know 47. Would you say that Orange County is in an economic recession or not? (if yes: Do you think it is in a serious, a moderate, or a mild recession?) 5% yes, serious recession 20 yes, moderate recession 12 yes, mild recession 54 no 9 don’t know 48. Are you concerned that you or someone in your family will lose their job in the next year or not? (if yes: Are you very concerned or somewhat concerned?) 14% yes, very concerned 16 yes, somewhat concerned 69 no 1 don’t know 49. Some people think that California is divided into economic groups, the haves and have-nots, while others think it is not divided that way. Do you think that California is divided into haves and have-nots, or do you think that California is not divided that way? 59% divided into haves and have-nots 37 not divided that way 4 don’t know 50. If you had to choose, which of these groups are you in—the haves or have-nots? 65% haves 27 have-nots 8 don’t know - 26 - 51. Do you think that in California today (rotate) (a) all people have an equal opportunity to get ahead, or (b) the government should do more to make sure that all Californians have an equal opportunity to get ahead. 56% people have equal opportunity 37 government should do more 2 both (volunteered) 2 neither (volunteered) 3 don’t know 52. On another topic, some people are registered to vote and others are not. Are you absolutely certain that you are registered to vote? (if yes: Are you registered as a Democrat, a Republican, another party, or as an independent?) 22% Yes, Democrat 35 Yes, Republican 3 Yes, other party 12 Yes, independent / “decline to state” 3 Yes, refuse to say party 25 No, not registered 53. Would you consider yourself to be politically very liberal, somewhat liberal, middle-of-the-road, somewhat conservative, or very conservative? 8% very liberal 21 somewhat liberal 30 middle-of-the-road 27 somewhat conservative 11 very conservative 3 don’t know 54. On another topic, overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that George W. Bush is handling his job as president of the United States? 68% approve 27 disapprove 5 don’t know 55. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that President Bush is handling economic issues? 57% approve 37 disapprove 6 don’t know 56. And turning to the state, overall do you approve or disapprove of the way that Gray Davis is handling his job as governor of California? 33% approve 60 disapprove 7 don’t know 57. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Davis is handling the issue of jobs and the economy in California? 34% approve 55 disapprove 11 don’t know - 27 - 58. On another subject, Orange County is home to increasing numbers of people from many different racial and ethnic groups—including Asians, Latinos, black, and whites. On balance, do you think that having increasing numbers of people from different racial and ethnic groups makes Orange County a better place to live or a worse place to live, or doesn’t it make much difference either way? 38% better place to live 12 worse place to live 47 doesn’t make much difference either way 3 don’t know 59. In your own daily life, how often do you come into contact with people from racial groups different from your own—very often, fairly often, once in a while, or hardly ever? 71% very often 14 fairly often 10 once in a while 5 hardly ever 60. How do you think you would react if someone in your family told you they were going to marry someone from another racial or ethnic group? Would it be fine with you, would it bother you but you would come to accept it, or would you not be able to accept it? (if necessary: By family we mean a member of your immediate family such as a child, brother, or sister) 79% would be fine with it 16 would bother me, but would come to accept it 2 would not be able to accept it 3 don’t know [61-63: demographic questions] 64. How do you usually commute to work—drive alone, carpool, public bus or transit, or some other means? 80% drive alone 10 carpool 4 public bus or transit 3 work at home (volunteered) 3 other (specify) 65. Overall, how satisfied are you with your commute to work? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied? 47% very satisfied 30 somewhat satisfied 12 somewhat dissatisfied 9 very dissatisfied 2 don’t know [66-70: demographic questions] December 2002 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Advisory Committee Mary Bitterman President The James Irvine Foundation Angela Blackwell President Policy Link Paul Brest President The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation Mollyann Brodie Vice President Kaiser Family Foundation Bruce E. Cain Director Institute of Governmental Studies University of California, Berkeley Matt Fong Chairman Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation Advisory Committee William Hauck President California Business Roundtable Sherry Bebitch Jeffe Senior Scholar School of Policy, Planning, and Development University of Southern California Monica Lozano President and Chief Operating Officer La Opinión Donna Lucas President NCG Porter Novelli Max Neiman Director Center for Social and Behavioral Research University of California, Riverside Dan Rosenheim News Director KPIX-TV Richard Schlosberg President and CEO The David and Lucile Packard Foundation Carol Stogsdill President Stogsdill Consulting Cathy Taylor Vice President and Editorial Commentary Director Orange County Register Raymond L. Watson Vice Chairman of the Board The Irvine Company Carol Whiteside President Great Valley Center - 28 - PUBLIC POLICY INSTITUTE OF CALIFORNIA Board of Directors Raymond L. Watson, Chairman Vice Chairman of the Board The Irvine Company William K. Coblentz Senior Partner Coblentz, Patch, Duffy & Bass, LLP Edward K. Hamilton Chairman Hamilton, Rabinovitz & Alschuler, Inc. Walter B. Hewlett Director Center for Computer Assisted Research in the Humanities David W. Lyon President and CEO Public Policy Institute of California Cheryl White Mason Chief, Civil Liability Management Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office Arjay Miller Dean Emeritus Graduate School of Business Stanford University Ki Suh Park Design and Managing Partner Gruen Associates A. Alan Post Former State Legislative Analyst State of California Constance L. Rice Co-Director The Advancement Project Thomas C. Sutton Chairman & CEO Pacific Life Insurance Company Cynthia A. Telles Department of Psychiatry UCLA School of Medicine Carol Whiteside President Great Valley Center Harold M. Williams President Emeritus The J. Paul Getty Trust and Of Counsel Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP Advisory Council Clifford W. Graves Vice Chancellor, Physical Planning University of California, Merced Elizabeth G. Hill Legislative Analyst State of California Hilary W. Hoynes Associate Professor Department of Economics University of California, Davis Andrés E. Jiménez Director California Policy Research Center University of California, Berkeley, Office of the President Rudolf Nothenberg Chief Administrative Officer (Retired) City and County of San Francisco Manuel Pastor Professor, Latin American & Latino Studies University of California, Santa Cruz Peter Schrag Contributing Editor The Sacramento Bee James P. Smith Senior Economist RAND PUBLIC POLICY INSTITUTE OF CALIFORNIA 500 Washington Street, Suite 800 San Francisco, California 94111 Phone: (415) 291-4400 Fax: (415) 291-4401 www.ppic.org info@ppic.org" } ["___content":protected]=> string(104) "

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" ["_permalink":protected]=> string(111) "https://www.ppic.org/publication/ppic-statewide-survey-special-survey-of-orange-county-december-2001/s_1202mbs/" ["_next":protected]=> array(0) { } ["_prev":protected]=> array(0) { } ["_css_class":protected]=> NULL ["id"]=> int(8269) ["ID"]=> int(8269) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "1" ["post_content"]=> string(0) "" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 02:36:05" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(3416) ["post_status"]=> string(7) "inherit" ["post_title"]=> string(9) "S 1202MBS" ["post_type"]=> string(10) "attachment" ["slug"]=> string(9) "s_1202mbs" ["__type":protected]=> NULL ["_wp_attached_file"]=> string(13) "S_1202MBS.pdf" ["wpmf_size"]=> string(6) "763091" ["wpmf_filetype"]=> string(3) "pdf" ["wpmf_order"]=> string(1) "0" ["searchwp_content"]=> string(96981) "PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY DECEMBER 2002 Public Policy Institute of California Special Survey of Orange County in collaboration with the University of California, Irvine ○○○○○ Mark Baldassare Research Director & Survey Director The Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) is a private operating foundation established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. The Institute is dedicated to improving public policy in California through independent, objective, nonpartisan research. PPIC’s research agenda focuses on three program areas: population, economy, and governance and public finance. Studies within these programs are examining the underlying forces shaping California’s future, cutting across a wide range of public policy concerns, including education, health care, immigration, income distribution, welfare, urban growth, and state and local finance. PPIC was created because three concerned citizens – William R. Hewlett, Roger W. Heyns, and Arjay Miller – recognized the need for linking objective research to the realities of California public policy. Their goal was to help the state’s leaders better understand the intricacies and implications of contemporary issues and make informed public policy decisions when confronted with challenges in the future. PPIC does not take or support positions on any ballot measure or state and federal legislation nor does it endorse or support any political parties or candidates for public office. David W. Lyon is founding President and Chief Executive Officer of PPIC. Raymond L. Watson is Chairman of the Board of Directors. Public Policy Institute of California 500 Washington Street, Suite 800 • San Francisco, California 94111 Telephone: (415) 291-4400 • Fax: (415) 291-4401 info@ppic.org • www.ppic.org Preface The Orange County Survey – a collaborative effort of the Public Policy Institute of California and the School of Social Ecology at the University of California, Irvine – is a special edition of the PPIC Statewide Survey. This is the second in an annual series of PPIC surveys of Orange County. Mark Baldassare, the director of the PPIC Statewide Survey, is the founder and director of the Orange County Annual Survey at UCI and a former UCI professor. The UCI survey was conducted 19 times from 1982 to 2000, so the Orange County Survey collaboration between PPIC and UCI that began in 2001 is an extension of earlier survey efforts. The special survey of Orange County is co-sponsored by UCI with local support from Deloitte and Touche, Pacific Life Foundation, Disneyland, Los Angeles Times, Orange County Business Council, Orange County Division of League of California Cities, Orange County Register, The Irvine Company, and United Way of Orange County. Orange County is the second most populous county in the state and one of California’s fastest growing and changing regions. The county is home to almost 2.9 million residents today, having gained nearly one million residents since 1980. Three in four residents were white and non-Hispanic in 1980; today, nearly half are Latinos and Asians. The county’s dynamic economy has become one of the leaders in the high-technology industry. The county is a bellwether county in politics and the site of many important governance issues, including a county-government bankruptcy, public controversy over the reuse plans for the closed El Toro Marine Corps Air Station, and the use and expansion of toll roads. There are also housing, transportation, and environmental concerns related to development. Public opinion findings are critical to informing discussions and resolving public debates on key issues. The purpose of this study is to inform policymakers by providing timely, accurate, and objective information about policy preferences and economic, social, and political trends. To measure changes over time, this survey of 2,007 adult residents includes questions from earlier Orange County Annual Surveys. It also includes key indicators from the PPIC Statewide Survey for comparisons with the state and regions of California. We also consider racial/ethnic, income, and political differences. The following issues are explored in this Orange County Survey: • County Conditions – What are the most important issues facing the county? How satisfied are residents with their local surroundings, local public services, and with life in Orange County in general? Compared to other regions of the state, how much of a problem are issues such as air pollution, the economy, growth, and housing in Orange County? • Public Policy – What types of infrastructure and transportation projects are considered most important for Orange County, and how do local residents feel about taxes and other funding options? How do residents feel about the Great Park plan passed by the voters in March? • Economic and Political Trends – What are the recent trends in consumer confidence, perceptions of the county’s economy, and the county’s real estate market? How do county residents rate their personal finances today? How many consider themselves among the “have-nots?” How do they rate the performance of Governor Davis and President Bush? Copies of this report may be ordered by e-mail (order@ppic.org) or phone (415-291-4400). Copies of this and earlier reports are posted on the publications page of the PPIC web site (www.ppic.org). For questions about the survey, please contact survey@ppic.org. -i- - ii - Contents Preface Press Release County Conditions Public Policy Economic and Political Trends Survey Methodology Survey Questions and Results Survey Advisory Committee i v 1 7 13 21 23 28 - iii - Press Release SPECIAL SURVEY OF ORANGE COUNTY ON THE OUTSIDE LOOKING IN: LATINOS SHARE LESS IN COUNTY’S BOUNTY BUT ARE MORE OPTIMISTIC ABOUT FUTURE Despite Strong Support for Great Park, Few Residents Plan To Use It; Orange County’s Economic Picture Brighter Than Nation’s SAN FRANCISCO, California, December 5, 2002 — Orange County’s Latino and white residents hold starkly different visions of the region’s prosperity, priorities, and politics, according to a new survey released today by the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) and UC Irvine. But despite their present anxiety about economic opportunities, Latinos remain more optimistic than the region as a whole about their own personal outlook and the county’s future. Like most Californians (61%), a majority of Orange County residents (59%) believe the state is divided into economic groups — haves and have-nots. While Orange County residents (65%) are more likely than Californians overall (60%) to say they are haves, Latinos in Orange County (51%) are more likely than Latinos in the state (47%) to view themselves as have-nots. The difference between racial/ethnic groups in Orange County is striking: 75 percent of whites say they are haves, compared to 39 percent of Latinos. On a host of related issues, the gap between Latinos and whites is yawning: • Job Security: Latinos (48%) are twice as likely as whites (23%) to be concerned that they or someone in their family will lose their job in the next year. Thirty percent of residents overall express at least some concern about job loss. • Personal Finances: 32 percent of Latinos, compared to 23 percent of whites, say they worry about money very often. Overall, 26 percent of residents worry about money very often. • Household Finances: Latinos are more than twice as likely as whites (23% to 10%) to say their household income is not enough to meet their bills and obligations; whites are twice as likely as Latinos (44% to 22%) to say they have enough household income to be able to save or buy extras. On the whole, 38 percent of residents say they have more than enough income, 49 percent just enough, and 23 percent not enough. • Home and Community: Latinos are less likely than whites to be very satisfied with their housing situation (52% to 71%) and with their neighborhood (53% to 72%). Most county residents say they are very satisfied with their home (65%) and neighborhood (66%). Vastly different perspectives lead to different priorities: When Orange County residents are asked to name the most important issue facing Orange County today, population growth and development (20%), traffic and transportation (16%), and housing (12%) are mentioned most often. However, while whites are more likely than Latinos to mention growth (25% to 8%), Latinos are more likely than whites to mention jobs and the economy (13% to 6%) and crime and gangs (12% to 3%). “The gap we see between white and Latino perceptions in Orange County is greater than in the rest of the state, and this is a cause for concern,” says PPIC Statewide Survey Director Mark Baldassare. “But consistent with statewide trends, Latinos in the county also look to the future with great optimism — more so than any other group.” Indeed, Latinos (43%) are more likely than whites (29%) or residents overall (33%) to think the county will be a better place to live in the future. They are also more likely than whites to say they will be better off a year from now than they are today (55% to 44%). Great Park: If You Build It, Will They Come? Measure A on the March 2002 ballot sparked a debate that caught the attention of most county residents: 71 percent say they know either a lot (25%) or a little (46%) about the Great Park plan. -v- Press Release And residents still appear to like what they hear: 65 percent favor the plan, including majorities in the Northern (62%) and Southern (75%) parts of the county. A strong majority (71%) also supports setting aside some of the residential development included in the Great Park plan for affordable housing. But while residents may appreciate the concept of the Great Park, few think they will use it on a regular basis. Currently, only 13 percent say they will use the park often for recreational purposes, while 44 percent say they will use it sometimes (30%) or rarely (14%), and 39 percent do not expect to use the park at all. Residents of the South County (54%), where the park would be located, are more likely than North County residents (38%) to say they will use the park at least sometimes. Perhaps because many residents do not anticipate using the park facilities on a regular basis, support for funding the Great Park project with local tax dollars is split. Currently, 49 percent say they favor funding the project with local tax dollars, while 44 percent oppose the idea. South County residents (58%) are more likely than North County residents (45%) to favor putting local tax dollars toward the project. Again, there are strong racial/ethnic differences on this public policy issue. While Latinos are less likely than whites to have heard about the Great Park plan (44% to 81%), they are more likely to support the plan when they are read a description of it (71% to 62%). Latinos (81%) also favor including affordable housing in the plan to a greater extent than whites (67%), and they are more likely to say they intend to use the park at least sometimes (50% to 38%). Finally, Latinos (58%) are also far more likely than whites (45%) to support using tax dollars to help fund the project. Economic Forecast Worse, But Beats Nation Orange County’s score of 90 on the five-question consumer confidence index — considerably higher than the national rating of 81 — is down 3 points from last year and 22 points from 2000. Today, 50 percent of county residents say their financial situation is better than a year ago, compared to 55 percent in 2001. As was true last year, residents’ gloomy view of the national economy has not influenced their attitudes about spending: 61 percent of residents (compared to 63% in 2001) say it is a good time to make large purchases. Overall ratings of the Orange County economy are also less glowing than one year ago. Today, 58 percent of residents rate the local economy as either excellent or good — a 16-point decline from 2001. One-quarter of residents also say their region is in a serious (5%) or moderate (20%) recession, while another 12 percent say it is in a mild recession. However, Orange County residents are far less negative than residents of any other region in California or of the state as a whole. Indeed, nearly 40 percent of Californians think their region is in a serious to moderate recession. Why is Orange County the most optimistic place in California? Perhaps it is the real estate market: Large majorities of homeowners (82%) and renters (73%), South County (82%) and North County (77%) residents, as well as Latinos (81%) and whites (79%) consider buying a home in Orange County an excellent or good investment. Can Local Taxes Help Solve Regional Problems? As in 2001, county residents appear very concerned about a number of growth-related issues: About half see traffic (56%) and housing affordability (48%) as big problems in their region. However, when asked what types of infrastructure projects they think should have top priority for public funds, residents overwhelmingly choose school facilities (45%) over surface transportation (27%), water (13%) or sewer (7%) systems, or airports (5%). When asked to prioritize funding for a range of surface transportation projects, more county residents choose freeways and highways (39%), with fewer selecting light rail (21%), local streets and roads (16%), public bus systems (14%), and carpool lanes (7%). Despite their concerns, a majority of residents (53%) say their local government has adequate funding for the infrastructure projects that are needed to prepare the region for future growth. As a result, there is strong support (71%) for the two-thirds majority requirement for passing local transportation taxes or extensions. And although most residents (68%) are satisfied with the way Measure M tax revenues are being used for transportation projects in the county, only 62 percent of registered voters - vi - Press Release say they would support an extension of the half-cent sales tax. Thus the extension would fail to meet the two-thirds threshold for passage. Other Key Findings • Quality of Life (page 6) When it comes to quality of life in Orange County, nine in 10 residents (89%) say that things are going very (32%) or somewhat (57%) well. County residents are more satisfied than residents of the San Francisco Bay Area or Los Angeles with their quality of life. • Local Public Services (page 3) Most Orange County residents give excellent or good ratings to their local police protection (83%), local parks, beaches and other recreational facilities (82%), local freeways, streets, and roads (66%), and local public schools (63%). Latinos are less likely than whites to give police protection high ratings (76% to 86%) but more likely to express satisfaction with public schools (72% to 60%). • Local Government Ratings (page 4) Fifty-eight percent of residents rate the performance of their city government as excellent or good. Similar to one year ago, 42 percent of residents say their county government is doing an excellent or good job. Attitudes about local government efficiency and responsiveness have also changed little: 81 percent say the county government wastes at least some of the taxpayer’s money, and only 12 percent say that county officials pay a lot of attention to what people think when making policy decisions. • Ratings for President Bush, Governor Davis (pages 19, 20) Sixty-eight percent of county residents say they approve of the job President George W. Bush is doing overall, and 57 percent approve of his performance on economic issues. Governor Gray Davis receives harsher grades: Only one-third of residents approve of his job performance overall (33%) or on economic issues (34%). Latinos are more likely than whites to approve of Davis overall (53% to 25%) and with respect to economic issues (53% to 27%). About the Survey The Special Survey of Orange County — a collaborative effort of PPIC and the School of Social Ecology at UC Irvine — is a special edition of the PPIC Statewide Survey. This is the second in an annual series of PPIC surveys of Orange County. Findings of the current survey are based on a telephone survey of 2,007 adult Orange County residents, interviewed from November 6 to November 14, 2002. Interviews were conducted in English or Spanish. The sampling error for the total sample is +/- 2%. For more information on survey methodology, see page 21. Dr. Mark Baldassare is Research Director at PPIC, where he also holds the Arjay and Frances Fearing Miller Chair in Public Policy. He is founder and director of the PPIC Statewide Survey, which he has conducted since 1998. From 1982 to 2000, Dr. Baldassare directed the Orange County Annual Survey for UC Irvine. His most recent book, A California State of Mind: The Conflicted Voter in a Changing World, is available at www.ppic.org. PPIC is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to improving public policy through objective, nonpartisan research on the economic, social, and political issues that affect Californians. The Institute was established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. PPIC does not take or support positions on any ballot measure or state and federal legislation nor does it endorse or support any political parties or candidates for public office. This report will appear on PPIC’s website (www.ppic.org) on December 5. See graphics next page. ### - vii - Percent Percent Percent Percent What is the most important issue facing Orange County today? 30 20 20 16 12 10 0 8 6 Percent EconomyHo&ujsionbgs Education trans. dev. Growth & Traffic & Percent All Adults Howdo you think things are going in terms of quality of life? (% very well) 40 32 30 21 20 16 17 10 0 Calif ornia SF Los Bay Area Angeles (Source: November 2002 Statew ide Survey) Orange County Percent All Adults Would you consider yourself a " have" or a " have-not" ? (% " haves" ) 100 87 80 65 75 60 39 40 38 20 0 All Latino White <$40K $80K+ Percent All Adults Percent What type of transportation project should have top priority for public funding? 60 39 40 20 21 16 14 0 7 roads buses Lanes Public Carpool StreetsLi&ght rail Percent All Adults Highways Are you concerned about job loss? (% very / somewhat concerned) 50 48 41 40 30 30 23 21 20 10 0 All Latino White <$40K $80K+ Percent All Adults The Great Park (% approve) North 80 75 62 60 South 58 45 71 69 40 20 0 Great Park Plan Using local tax $ Including af f ordable housing Percent All Adults County Conditions Most Important Problem When asked what they think is the most important issue facing Orange County today, residents are most likely to mention population growth and development (20%), traffic congestion (16%), and housing (12%). Other topics such as jobs and the economy (8%), schools and education (6%), crime and gangs (5%), the El Toro Marine base (4%), environment and pollution (3%), and immigration (3%) are each noted by fewer than one in 10 residents. Compared to a year ago, the most notable changes in opinion are the declining mention of the El Toro Air Base (14% to 4%)—a reflection of the fact that Orange County voters passed the Great Park plan in March 2002—and increasing mention of traffic (12% to 16%) and the economy (4% to 8%) as the most important issue. There are significant regional and racial/ethnic differences in opinion. Whites are more likely than Latinos to mention growth (25% to 8%), while Latinos are more likely than whites to mention the economy (13% to 6%) and crime (12% to 3%) as the most important issue. In the South County, population growth has now replaced the El Toro Marine Base as the focus of attention. In fact, South County residents are much more likely than those in the North County to mention growth as a problem (27% to 17%), while concerns about traffic and housing costs are fairly similar across Orange County. Mention of growth and traffic increases with education and income. Interestingly, a year after the September 11th attacks, only 1 percent of Orange County residents name terrorism and homeland security as the most important issue facing the county. To place the county’s responses in a comparative light, the PPIC Statewide Surveys conducted throughout 2002 found that Californians in general named education, the economy, and energy and electricity as the three most important issues confronting the state. "What do you think is the most important issue facing Orange County today?" Population growth and development Traffic and transportation Housing issues Jobs and the economy Schools and education Crime and gangs El Toro Marine Air Base Environment and pollution Immigration, legal and illegal Poverty, the poor, the homeless, welfare Drugs and drug abuse Government regulations Other Don’t know All Region Adults North South 20% 17% 27% 16 17 15 12 11 12 8 96 6 74 5 63 4 28 3 24 3 32 1 11 1 11 1 11 9 97 11 14 9 Race / Ethnicity White Latino 25% 8% 17 13 12 10 6 13 58 3 12 51 41 31 11 12 11 89 9 20 -1- County Conditions Regional Problems About half of the county's residents (56%) see traffic and housing affordability (48%) as big problems in the region they live in, while about one in three (34%) rate population growth and development as equally serious. Fewer county residents say that the availability of jobs (20%) or air pollution (16%) are major problems in their regions. These rankings of regional problems have changed very little in the past year. Orange County residents are somewhat more likely than Californians as a whole to rank traffic congestion, housing affordability, and population growth as big problems in their region. By contrast, Orange County residents are less likely than all Californians to see job opportunities and air pollution as big problems. Orange County residents are somewhat more worried than Los Angeles residents about housing affordability, while Los Angeles residents are more likely than Orange County residents to say that traffic, growth, jobs, and especially air pollution are big problems. San Francisco Bay Area residents are more likely than Orange County residents to mention housing affordability as a major problem. "In your region, how much of a problem is ..." Percent seeing the issue as a big problem Traffic congestion on freeways and major roads Availability of housing you can afford Population growth and development Lack of opportunities for well-paying jobs Air pollution All California* 51% 44 32 28 27 SF Bay Area* 59% 59 30 22 18 Region Los Angeles* 61% 44 37 27 38 Orange County 56% 48 34 20 16 * Results from November 2002 PPIC Statewide Survey Within Orange County, there are some significant differences in perceptions of regional problems: North County residents are more likely than those in the South County to rank traffic congestion (59% to 50%), the availability of jobs (22% to 14%), and air pollution (18% to 11%) as major problems. Perceptions of population growth and housing affordability are about the same in both regions. Perceptions also differ across racial/ethnic groups. Whites are more likely than Latinos to highlight traffic congestion (59% to 50%) and growth and development (38% to 27%) as big problems, while Latinos are more likely than whites to mention the availability of well-paying jobs (34% to 15%). Latinos and whites are fairly similar in their rankings of housing affordability and air pollution. There are also variations in the perceptions of regional problems in Orange County by age, education, and income level. Older residents tend to think that growth is a big problem, while younger residents are more likely to express concern about the lack of availability of jobs, housing affordability, and air pollution. Orange County residents with higher incomes and college educations are more likely than others to cite traffic congestion and growth as major regional issues, while those with lower incomes and no college education are more likely than others to mention the availability of jobs, affordable housing, and air pollution as big problems. -2- County Conditions "In your region, how much of a problem is ..." Percent seeing the issue as a big problem Traffic congestion on freeways and major roads Availability of housing you can afford Population growth and development Lack of opportunities for well-paying jobs Air pollution All Adults 56% 48 34 20 16 Region North South 59% 50% 48 47 34 35 22 14 18 11 Race / Ethnicity White Latino 59% 50% 49 48 38 27 15 34 16 18 Local Public Services Most Orange County residents are quite satisfied with their local public services: Eight in 10 rate their police protection (83%) and parks and beaches (82%) as excellent or good, while six in 10 give similarly positive ratings to their roads (66%) and public schools (63%). The ratings of these four public services are similar to those given a year ago and higher than they were a decade ago. South County residents give higher ratings than North County residents to all of their local public services, except schools, which receive similar assessments from residents in both regions. Latinos are considerably more positive than whites about their local schools (72% to 60%), whereas satisfaction with police protection is higher among whites than Latinos (86% to 76%), as is satisfaction with local parks (85% to 80%). Racial/ethnic differences are further emphasized by the substantially higher level of fair to poor ratings given to local police protection by Latinos compared to whites (21% to 11%). Positive ratings of local parks and police increase with education and income. Interestingly, excellent and good ratings of local public schools decline with higher education and age. Those with public school children (81%) are much more positive about the public schools than those with children not in public school (49%) and those with no children at home (55%). "How would you rate some of the public services in your local area?" Percent saying services are excellent or good Local police protection Local parks, beaches, and other public recreational facilities Local freeways, streets, and roads Local public schools All Adults 83% Region Race / Ethnicity North South White Latino 80% 88% 86% 76% 82 78 91 85 80 66 62 74 65 70 63 62 64 60 72 - 3 - December 2002 County Conditions Local Government Ratings What kind of job is local government doing when it comes to solving problems at the county and city level? County government gets an excellent or good job rating from 42 percent of Orange County residents, a rating that has remained stable over the past few years. By contrast, 58 percent think that their city government is doing an excellent or good job. Latinos are more positive than whites (54% to 39%) in rating their county government, as are residents in the North County compared to those in the South County (44% to 39%). As for city government ratings, there are no differences between whites and Latinos, but South County residents give higher rankings than North County residents (61% to 56%). County government ratings decline with education and income, while city government ratings do not vary much by these factors. County government continues to receive mixed grades when it comes to fiscal efficiency, even well after the 1994 county-government bankruptcy: 81 percent say the county government wastes at least some of the taxpayer’s money, and 35 percent say that it wastes a lot. Whites (85%) are more likely than Latinos (73%) to say that the county government wastes at least some of the taxpayer’s money. The perception that the county government wastes taxpayer money tends to increase with age, education, homeownership, and income. There are no differences in perceptions of county government inefficiency across political groups or between North and South County residents. When it comes to assessing county officials’ responsiveness to public opinion when drafting policies, many residents still complain about a lack of responsiveness (the controversy over the county’s plans to develop an airport at the El Toro Marine Base was finally resolved by local voters at the ballot box). Only 12 percent of county residents say that county officials pay a lot of attention to what people think when deciding policies; 35 percent say that county government pays very little or no attention to what people think. We found no differences across income, education, or racial/ethnic groups, or across political parties or county regions. All Region Race / Ethnicity Adults North South White Latino How would you rate the performance of county government in solving problems in Orange County? Excellent / Good Fair Poor 42% 38 12 44% 37 12 39% 40 13 39% 40 14 54% 33 8 Don't know 878 7 5 How would you rate the performance of city government in solving problems in your city? Excellent / Good 58% 56% 61% 58% 59% Fair Poor Don't know / Don’t live in city 27 27 25 26 89 6 9 78 8 7 27 7 7 -4- County Conditions Resident Satisfaction While many are concerned about the effects of traffic, growth and housing affordability on quality of life in Orange County, most residents are satisfied with their personal circumstances. Two in three report they are very satisfied with their homes (65%) and neighborhoods (66%). Three in four (77%) express at least some satisfaction with their daily commutes to and from work, while 47 percent say they are very satisfied. How does resident satisfaction in Orange County compare with the state? Based on the findings of the November 2002 Statewide Survey, Orange County residents are more likely to say they are very satisfied with their neighborhood (66% to 57%), a little more likely to say they are very satisfied with their housing (65% to 62%), and less likely to say they are very satisfied with their daily commute (47% to 54%). Satisfaction with housing and neighborhood increases with education, income, and homeownership, with at least half of the respondents in all of these groups reporting high satisfaction. South County residents are more likely than North County residents to say they are very satisfied with their housing (73% to 61%) and neighborhoods (79% to 61%), and whites are more likely than Latinos to express a high degree of satisfaction with their housing (71% to 52%) and neighborhoods (72% to 53%). Latinos are more likely than whites to report that they are not satisfied with their residence (12% to 7%) or neighborhood (13% to 7%). Eighty percent of Orange County’s employed residents report driving to work alone – a number that has changed very little since the first Orange County survey in 1982. Driving alone tends to be more prevalent among whites (84%) than Latinos (68%) and increases with age, education, and income. Residents in the North County and South County are equally likely to drive alone to work (both 80%), but satisfaction with commute is higher in South County than North County (52% to 44%). Commuting satisfaction is similar across income and racial/ethnic groups and increases with age. How satisfied are you with the house or apartment you live in? Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied How satisfied are you with the neighborhood you live in? Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied How satisfied are you with your commute to work? (employed residents only) Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied Don’t know All Region Adults North South Race / Ethnicity White Latino 65% 27 8 61% 30 9 73% 20 7 71% 22 7 52% 36 12 66% 26 8 61% 29 10 79% 17 4 72% 21 7 53% 34 13 47% 30 21 2 44% 32 22 2 52% 27 19 2 48% 27 22 3 48% 35 17 0 - 5 - December 2002 County Conditions Quality of Life The overall mood in Orange County remains upbeat, even as residents complain about regional conditions and as the nation and state continue to be mired in an economic slowdown. Ratings of the quality of life in Orange County are basically the same today as they were from the late 1990s through 2001: Approximately nine in 10 residents (89%) say things are going well in Orange County. Although this latest figure is slightly lower than the highs of the most recent years, it is still 29 percent higher than the lows of 1992-1993. "Thinking about the quality of life in Orange County, how do you think things are going – very well, somewhat well, somewhat badly, or very badly?" Very well Somewhat well Somewhat badly Very badly All California 21% 61 15 3 SF Bay Area 16% 59 20 5 Region Los Angeles 17% 63 17 3 Orange County 32% 57 9 2 One in three residents (32%) thinks that things are going very well, and another 57 percent say that things are going somewhat well. Comparing these results to the November 2002 Statewide Survey, Orange County residents are more satisfied than residents in Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area with the quality of life in their region. In Orange County, whites are more likely than Latinos (36% to 25%), and South County residents much more likely than North County residents (42% to 29%), to say things are going very well. Positive ratings of Orange County’s quality of life increase with age, education, and income. Residents are evenly divided when asked if the quality of life in the county will get better, worse, or stay the same in the future. Whites (29%) are less likely than Latinos (43%) to anticipate a better future. Similarly, South County residents (29%) are less likely than North County residents (37%) to say that the county will be a better place to live in the future. Optimism about the county’s future declines with age, education, and income. "In the future, do you think that Orange County will be a better place to live than it is now, a worse place to live than it is now, or there will be no change?" Better place Worse place No change Don’t know All Adults 33% 31 32 4 Race / Ethnicity White Latino 29% 43% 35 22 33 31 34 -6- Public Policy Infrastructure "Infrastructure" may be a commonly used term among planners and policymakers, but it is not a household word in Orange County. While six in 10 residents say they are familiar with the term "infrastructure," only one in four say they know a lot about it. A knowledge gap is particularly evident across racial/ethnic groups: 30 percent of whites are very familiar with the term, compared to only 8 percent of Latinos. Knowledge of infrastructure increases with age, income, and education. After listening to a brief definition of the term, residents highlighted school facilities (45%) as their top priority for infrastructure spending in the county. Considerably fewer mentioned surface transportation (27%), water systems (13%), sewer systems (7%), and airports (5%). These responses are similar to those of residents throughout the state, as reflected in our November 2002 Statewide Survey. Although Orange County residents cite traffic and growth issues as the county’s most pressing problems, both North (46%) and South (43%) County residents rank school facilities as the top infrastructure priority. There are no differences of opinion across political groups, but there is some variation in the strength of this priority among other groups: Women are more likely than men (51% to 38%), Latinos are more likely than whites (57% to 41%), and those with children at home are more likely than those without (54% to 38%) to see school facilities as their top infrastructure priority. "Which infrastructure project do you think should have the top priority for public funds in Orange County?" All Region Race / Ethnicity Adults North South White Latino School facilities 45% 46% 43% 41% 57% Surface transportation 27 26 29 31 15 Water systems 13 11 15 13 13 Sewer systems 7 75 7 7 Airports 5 54 5 3 Other / Don’t know 3 54 3 5 Virtually all residents see the condition of roads and other infrastructure as important to the quality of life and economic vitality in the county – 73 percent say the roads and infrastructure are very important. By comparison, 59 percent of Californians in the November 2002 Statewide Survey said that the condition of roads and other infrastructure was very important to the quality of life and economic vitality in their regions. "How important is the condition of the roads and other infrastructure to the quality of life and economic vitality in Orange County?" All Region Race / Ethnicity Adults North South White Latino Very important 73% 74% 72% 73% 77% Somewhat important 25 24 25 25 21 Not important 2 23 2 2 -7- Public Policy Surface Transportation Priorities and Funding When asked to think about funding for a range of surface transportation projects, a plurality of county residents (39%) responded that freeways and highways should have top priority. Another 7 percent gave the nod more specifically to carpool lanes. Thus, nearly half of all residents (46%) mention freeways, highways, and carpool lanes as their top choice for county attention. Fewer residents mention light rail systems (21%), local streets and roads (16%), and public bus systems (14%). Comparing these results to the November 2002 Statewide Survey, we find that Orange County residents are similar to Californians throughout the state in prioritizing freeways and highways (39% to 36%) but less inclined to note local streets and roads. Although freeways and highways are the top choice for surface transportation spending across all groups and regions in Orange County, we did find variation among some groups in prioritizing freeways and highways. For example, Republicans are more likely than Democrats (47% to 36%), whites are more likely than Latinos (42% to 27%), and residents under age 55 are more likely than older residents (41% to 33%) to think that freeways and highways should have precedence. "What type of transportation project should have the top priority for public funds in Orange County?" All Region Race / Ethnicity Adults North South White Latino Freeways and highways 39% 39% 38% 42% 27% Light rail system 21 18 27 25 9 Local streets and roads 16 17 13 14 22 Public bus system 14 15 13 11 22 Carpool lanes 7 8 6 5 15 Other / Don’t know 3 33 3 5 As noted above, residents overwhelmingly believe that roads and other infrastructure play an important role in the quality of life and economic vitality of Orange County; and they also believe that the major arteries throughout the county should have top priority when it comes to transportation funding. Are they confident that local governments in the county have the funding to maintain and prepare the county's infrastructure for the future? Most (53%) believe that local governments do have adequate funding – 31 percent think they do not. Latinos are more likely than whites, and North County residents more likely than those in the South County, to say that their local government has adequate funding. The perception that funding is inadequate increases with age, education, and income. Democrats (40%) are more likely than Republicans (33%) to think funding is inadequate. "Do you think that local government does or does not have adequate funding for the roads and other infrastructure projects that are needed to prepare Orange County for future growth?" All Region Race / Ethnicity Adults North South White Latino Does 53% 55% 49% 49% 67% Does not 31 30 33 35 22 Don’t know 16 15 18 16 11 -8- Public Policy Funding Transportation Projects Through the Local Sales Tax The local transportation sales tax (funded through Measure M in Orange County) is one of the primary means that local governments have for financing transportation projects. State law currently requires that two-thirds of the voters in a local election approve a tax increase or extension for it to pass. Although some policymakers and transportation planners have argued that this is too difficult a hurdle, 71 percent of Orange County residents (and 70% of registered voters) think the two-thirds majority requirement is a good thing. Large majorities of both North County (72%) and South County (69%) residents favor the two-thirds requirement. Residents across party affiliations and racial/ethnic, education, age, and income groups think that the current requirement is acceptable. The only significant difference of opinion about whether the two-thirds requirement is a good thing is between conservatives (77%) and liberals (65%), but both groups highly favor the current law. "Do you think that requiring a two-thirds majority vote for passing a local sales tax for local transportation projects is a good thing or a bad thing?" Good thing Bad thing Don’t know All Adults 71% 23 6 Party Registration Democrat Republican Independent 67% 72% 71% 27 24 26 64 3 The two-thirds majority requirement sets a high bar for raising local sales taxes, and in November 2000 the state’s voters supported a reduction of the two-thirds requirement for local school bonds to 55 percent. However, substantial support for the two-thirds requirement and a widespread belief that local governments have enough funding for roads and other infrastructure undermine support for a similar measure for local transportation projects. Only 43 percent of residents (and 41 percent of registered voters) say they would vote for an initiative that would change the two-thirds vote to a 55 percent requirement for transportation. There are, however, wide divisions of opinion on this initiative. Democrats are much more likely than Republicans (53% to 33%) to say they would vote to change the required level to 55 percent, as are liberals compared to conservatives (56% to 35%) and Latinos compared to whites (63% to 35%). Support for the 55 percent rule declines with age, education, homeownership, and income. "What if there was a state ballot measure that would change the two-thirds majority to a 55 percent vote for passing a local sales tax for transportation projects? Would you vote yes or no?" Yes No Don’t know All Adults 43% 50 7 Party Registration Democrat Republican Independent 53% 33% 43% 40 62 51 75 6 - 9 - December 2002 Public Policy Measure M Sales Tax Most Orange County residents today (68%) are satisfied with the way that Measure M tax revenues are being used for transportation projects in the county. Fourteen percent report being very satisfied with the allocation of these funds, another 54 percent say they are somewhat satisfied, and 18 percent say they are not satisfied. This assessment is very much in line with opinions over the past few years (for example, a 68% satisfaction rating in 2000). However, these results are markedly changed from the first ratings in 1992, when only 48 percent of the county's registered voters reported being very or somewhat satisfied with the way these funds were being used. North and South County residents are about equally satisfied with the way Measure M funds are being used (70% and 65%), as are Democrats and Republicans (69% and 64%), while Latinos are much more satisfied than whites (82% versus 64%). County residents across age, education, and income groups express satisfaction with the implementation of this local tax. When it comes to extending the Measure M sales tax beyond the current 2011 expiration date, 62 percent of all adults, as well as 62 percent of registered voters, say they would vote to continue the tax for another 20 years. Support for the extension is higher than it was in the 2000 Orange County Survey, when 55 percent of registered voters said they would vote yes on such a measure. However, even at 62 percent, the measure would fail to meet the two-thirds vote requirement. Most Democrats (71%) would vote to extend Measure M, compared to less than two-thirds of independents (60%) and barely half of Republicans (53%). There are no differences between North and South County residents. Majority, but not two-thirds, support for extending Measure M, is found among whites, homeowners, older, college educated, and higher-income residents. If the half-cent sales tax measure in Orange County were expanded to include “other infrastructure projects” as well as local transportation, 62 percent of registered voters would support it, and thus the measure would still fail to meet the two-thirds threshold for passing a local sales tax. How satisfied are you with the way Measure M funds are being used for transportation projects in Orange County? Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied Don’t know If an election were held today, would you vote yes or no on an Orange County ballot measure to extend the half-cent sales tax another 20 years? Yes No Don’t know Party Registration All Adults Democrat Republican Independent 14% 54 18 14 17% 52 17 14 11% 53 21 15 13% 60 17 10 62% 30 8 71% 22 7 53% 39 8 60% 32 8 - 10 - Public Policy The Great Park The passage of Measure A on the March 2002 ballot set in motion the “Great Park” plan at the former El Toro Marine Air Base, putting to rest a county proposal to build an airport on the site. How many Orange County residents are familiar with the Great Park? Seven in 10 say they know either a lot (25%) or a little (46%) about the plan. Residents in the South County, where the park would be located, are more likely than those in the North County to say they know a lot about the plan (35% to 21%). Eighty-one percent of whites have heard of the Great Park plan, compared to 44 percent of Latinos. Knowledge increases with age, education, income, and homeownership. When read a brief description of the Great Park plan, a solid majority of Orange County residents (65%) said they favored the plan, while 24 percent opposed it. Majorities of both whites (62%) and Latinos (71%) say they like the idea. Interestingly, while 52 percent of Latinos say they are unfamiliar with the plan, after they are read a description of it they overwhelmingly support it. South County residents greatly favor the plan (75%), while North County residents are somewhat less enthusiastic (62%). Republicans are less likely to favor the plan (59%) than Democrats (67%) or independents (68%). Similarly, conservatives (59%) are less likely to favor the plan than liberals (71%) or moderates (69%). People with children at home are more likely to support the idea than those without (71% to 62%). Support for the Great Park declines with age: 73 percent of those under age 35 favor the park, compared to 55 percent of those age 55 or older. There are no significant differences in support across education or income levels. Sixty percent of those who say they know a lot about the Great Park plan favor the idea. When residents are asked about funding for the Great Park with their local tax dollars, support levels decline considerably, although the level of decline varies by demographic group. About half of all residents (49%) favor using their local tax dollars to fund the park, while 44 percent are opposed to the idea. South County residents are more likely than North County residents (58% to 45%), and Latinos are more likely than whites (58% to 45%), to support the idea of directing local tax dollars toward the park. Majorities of liberals (57%) and moderates (51%) support this approach, while a majority of conservatives (52%) oppose it. Democrats (55%) are more likely than independents (48%) and Republicans (40%) to favor using taxes. People with children at home are more likely than those without children at home to lean toward directing local tax dollars to the park (53% to 46%). Support for using taxes for this purpose declines with age: Residents under age 35 are more likely than those age 55 and older to favor the idea (56% to 38%). Do you favor or oppose the Great Park plan? Favor Oppose Don't know Do you favor or oppose using your local tax dollars to help fund the Great Park project? Favor Oppose Don't know All Adults Region Race / Ethnicity North South White Latino 65% 24 11 62% 27 11 75% 19 6 62% 28 10 71% 16 13 49% 44 7 45% 47 8 58% 36 6 45% 48 7 58% 34 8 - 11 - December 2002 Public Policy Seven in 10 Orange County residents favor setting aside some of the residential development in the Great Park for affordable housing. While the lack of substantial opposition across groups is evident, there are differences in levels of support for including affordable housing. Latinos are more supportive of the idea than whites (81% versus 67%), and renters are more supportive than homeowners (80% versus 65%). The idea also has more support among lower-income residents: 80 percent of those making under $40,000 a year favor affordable housing at the site, compared to 64 percent of those who have an annual salary of $80,000 or more. The same is true for younger residents and those with less education: Residents under age 35 are more likely than those age 35 and older to favor the affordable housing set-aside (77% versus 67%), and residents with no college education are more likely than college graduates to like the idea (76% versus 67%). In addition, those who have lived in their current residence less than five years are more supportive of the setaside than those who have lived at their residence longer (75% to 66%). Along political lines, Democrats (75%) are more likely than Republicans (62%) to support the idea. Overall, people who think that affordable housing is a big problem in Orange County are more likely than those who do not think it is a problem to favor affordable housing as part of the Great Park plan (75% to 63%). While residents may appreciate the concept of the Great Park, few think they will visit it often. Although more than half of Orange County residents (57%) say they expect to use the Great Park for recreational purposes, only 13 percent plan to use it often. Thirty percent say they will visit it sometimes, and 14 percent say they will visit it rarely. Thirty-nine percent do not expect to use the park at all. Focusing on those who expect to use the park either often or sometimes reveals some rather substantial variations. Latinos are more likely than whites (50% to 38%), and South County residents are more likely than North County residents (54% to 38%), to say they will use the park at least sometimes. Residents under age 35 (49%) are more likely than those age 55 and older (29%) to say they will often or sometimes use the park. People with children in their households are much more likely to say they will use the park than those without children at home (52% to 38%). Renters are also more likely than homeowners to use the park, as are those who have lived at their residence less than five years compared to longer-term residents. There are no major differences by gender, education, or income. All Adults Would you favor or oppose setting aside some of the residential development included in the Great Park plan for affordable housing? Favor Oppose Don't know Do you think you will use the Great Park for recreational purposes? Yes, often Yes, sometimes Yes, rarely No Don’t know 71% 25 4 13% 30 14 39 4 Region Race / Ethnicity North South White Latino 71% 25 4 69% 27 4 67% 29 4 81% 15 4 10% 28 15 42 5 19% 35 10 32 4 11% 27 12 46 4 15% 35 20 24 6 - 12 - Economic and Political Trends Consumer Confidence Consumer confidence in Orange County has not recovered from its sharp dive in 2001. The Orange County Consumer Confidence Index now stands at 90, registering a 3-point decline since last year and a 22-point decline since 2000. Still, the Orange County index is higher than the national index, which recently stood at 81, after declining 11 points since 2001 and 28 points since 2000. The Consumer Confidence Index for Orange County is calculated using a nationally recognized formula provided by the University of Michigan, which computes scores for each of five questions, then adjusts for the 1966 base period. A score above 100 on the Confidence Index is considered very good; the average national score over the past 50 years is 85. Findings for the individual items that make up the Orange County index: • The greatest decline since last year is in the perception of personal finances, as they relate to the previous year. Today, 50 percent of Orange County residents say their financial situation is better than in 2001, and 30 percent say it is worse. Last year, 55 percent said they were better off financially than in the previous year, and 21 percent said they were worse off. • The percentages saying they will be better off next year (47%) and saying they will be worse off (8%) have changed very little since 2001. Fewer people today (41%) than in 2001 (45%) expect their current financial condition to remain the same. • Orange County residents continue to be uncertain about the U.S. economy over the next 12 months: 47 percent expect good economic times and 44 percent expect bad economic times. Last year, a similar 48 percent expected good times and 45 percent expected bad times. • The long-term outlook for the U.S. economy remains as mixed today as it was last year: 46 percent anticipate good economic times over the next five years, while 44 percent expect bad times. One year ago, 46 percent predicted good times, and 45 percent expected bad times. • Orange County residents remain bullish on buying, despite their mixed outlook on personal finances and the economy. Today, 61 percent of residents think that this is a good time to make major purchases, while just 28 percent call it a bad time. Last year, 63 percent thought that it was a good time to buy, and 26 percent thought it was a bad time. In general, higher-income residents express more economic confidence than lower-income residents. Whites are more likely than Latinos to expect the economy to be in good shape five years from now (50% to 38%) and to consider today a good time to make major purchases (66% to 52%). Nonetheless, when it comes to personal finances, Latinos are more likely than whites to say that they are better off now than a year ago (57% to 46%) and that they will be better off a year from now than today (55% to 44%). Five-Question Consumer Confidence Index All Adults Orange County United States ‘86 ‘87 ‘88 ‘89 ‘90 ‘91 ‘92 ‘93 ‘94 ‘95 ‘96 ‘97 ‘98 ‘99 ‘00 ‘01 ‘02 109 104 106 105 85 84 75 73 89 90 101 110 105 111 112 93 90 92 94 95 96 76 82 77 75 92 94 95 107 100 105 109 92 81 Source for Orange County from 1986 to 2000 is Orange County Annual Survey at UCI by Mark Baldassare and Cheryl Katz. Source for the United States is the University of Michigan; October 2002 figures were the most current at time of publication. - 13 - Economic and Political Trends County Economy Overall ratings of the Orange County economy are much less glowing than last year, although still in positive territory. Today, 58 percent of residents rate the Orange County economy as either excellent or good – a 16-point decline from last year and the least upbeat assessment since 1996. Still, ratings of the county’s economy are much more positive than they were between 1992 and 1996; and today, only 6 percent of Orange County residents think their economy is in poor shape. Ratings of the county economy are more positive among residents with higher incomes. Those with incomes of $80,000 or more are more likely than those with incomes below $40,000 to say that the Orange County economy is excellent or good (70% to 49%). Nonetheless, nearly half of the residents in the less affluent groups also rate the county’s economy as excellent or good. Whites are more likely than Latinos (62% to 50%), and South County residents are more likely than North County residents (67% to 54%), to rate the county economy in positive terms. One-quarter of the residents in Orange County think that their economy is in a serious to moderate recession, and another 12 percent say it is in a mild recession. About one in four adults in North County (28%) and South County (21%) and among Latinos (28%) and whites (25%) believe that the county is in a moderate to serious recession. Still, most residents (54%) do not think the county is experiencing this kind of economic trouble. The residents most likely to say that the county is in a serious to moderate recession are those with only a high-school diploma (29%) and those with incomes below $40,000 (31%). However, county residents appear less negative than residents of the state as a whole. For example, in the November 2002 Statewide Survey, nearly 40 percent of Californians thought their region was in a serious to moderate recession. "In general, how would you rate the economy in Orange County today?" All Adults Excellent / Good Fair Poor Don't know 1992 19% 52 28 1 1993 20% 49 30 1 1994 28% 54 17 1 1995 19% 50 30 1 1996 44% 45 10 1 1997 63% 32 4 1 1998 76% 20 3 1 1999 78% 19 2 1 2000 79% 17 2 2 2001 74% 21 4 1 2002 58% 34 6 2 Source for Orange County from 1992 to 2000 is the Orange County Annual Survey at UCI by Mark Baldassare and Cheryl Katz. "Would you say that [your region / Orange County] is in an economic recession or not?" (If yes: "Do you think it is in a serious, moderate, or mild recession?") All California Yes, serious recession Yes, moderate recession Yes, mild recession No Don’t know 13% 23 11 49 4 SF Bay Area 26% 25 13 34 2 Region Los Angeles 11% 26 10 49 4 Orange County 5% 20 12 54 9 - 14 - Economic and Political Trends Real Estate Market While stock market values have fallen, and Orange County median home values have climbed in the past year, a large majority of county residents see the purchase of a home in Orange County as an excellent or good investment. Among homeowners, 82 percent think that buying a home in the county is an excellent or good investment; 11 percent say it would be a fair investment; and only 6 percent think it would be a poor investment. This positive assessment by homeowners is unchanged from a year ago, and the scores in the past few years are significantly higher than in the early-to-mid 1990s. Among renters, 73 percent now believe that buying a home in the county is an excellent or good investment (up 3 points since last year); 15 percent consider it a fair investment; and 11 percent think it would be a poor investment. Over the past two years, renters have become much more bullish on the value of buying a home in Orange County than they were throughout the period from 1993 to 2000. In fact, renters now more closely resemble homeowners in their views on the value of owning a home (73% to 82%). Previously, renters were much less likely than homeowners to say that buying an Orange County home would be an excellent or good investment. As for regional differences, homeowners in the South County (86%) are more likely than homeowners in the North County (80%) to say that owning a home is an excellent or good investment. Renters in both regions are nearly equally likely to say that owning a home in Orange County would be an excellent or good investment (North, 73%; South, 74%). Interestingly, Latinos (81%) are as likely as whites (79%) to rate buying a home in Orange County as an excellent or a good investment. This is despite the fact that whites are almost twice as likely as Latinos to own a home (70% to 37%) and that homeownership itself generally fosters a somewhat more upbeat assessment of the value of buying a home in Orange County. "Do you think that buying a home in Orange County is an excellent, good, fair, or poor investment?" All Adults Homeowners 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 Excellent / Good Fair Poor 59% 26 14 57% 28 14 50% 31 18 60% 30 8 70% 23 6 75% 18 5 75% 19 5 75% 18 5 83% 11 5 82% 11 6 Don't know 1112121211 Renters Excellent / Good 53% 47% 41% 45% 56% 61% 56% 57% 70% 73% Fair 25 30 32 34 29 25 27 25 17 15 Poor 20 20 25 17 9 12 13 15 11 11 Don't know 2324624321 Source for Orange County from 1993 to 2000 is the Orange County Annual Survey at UCI by Mark Baldassare and Cheryl Katz. - 15 - December 2002 Economic and Political Trends Personal Finance How do Orange County residents feel about their personal financial situation? Nearly one in four say they are very satisfied, and another half say they are at least somewhat satisfied with their finances. In the September 2002 Statewide Survey, a similar 25 percent of Californians were very satisfied and 50 percent were somewhat satisfied with their finances. In Orange County, whites are more likely than Latinos (27% to 21%) to indicate that they are very satisfied with their finances, largely reflecting income differences across racial/ethnic groups. Only one in 10 residents with annual household incomes of $80,000 or more express dissatisfaction with their financial situation, compared to one-third of those with incomes under $40,000. Financial satisfaction is also higher among college graduates, homeowners, those age 55 and older, and South County residents. "In general, how satisfied are you with your current financial situation?" Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied All Adults 24% 55 21 Annual Household Income <$40K $40,00079,999 $80K+ 13% 18% 39% 53 61 51 34 21 10 Race / Ethnicity White 27% 53 20 Latino 21% 56 23 About four in ten Orange County residents indicate that they have enough income to save money or buy goods and services beyond bare necessities; half say they make just enough to make ends meet; and 13 percent say they do not make enough to meet their bills and obligations. These Orange County numbers are comparable to the California results in the September 2002 Statewide Survey. Residents’ perceptions that their incomes are more than sufficient to meet their needs increase sharply with income. For example, 13 percent of those with incomes below $40,000 say that they have extra income, compared to 65 percent of those with incomes of $80,000 or more. Whites are twice as likely as Latinos (44% to 22%) to say they have more than enough income to meet their needs, and South County residents are more likely than North County residents (45% to 34%) to say they have more than enough. The perception of financial comfort for Orange County residents increases with age and education. "Thinking about your household income, would you say that you have more than enough, so that you can save money or buy some extras, just enough to meet your bills and obligations, or not enough to meet your bills and obligations?" More than enough Just enough Not enough All Adults 38% 49 13 Annual Household Income <$40K $40,00079,999 $80K+ 13% 35% 65% 59 56 31 28 9 4 Race / Ethnicity White 44% 46 10 Latino 22% 55 23 - 16 - Economic and Political Trends More than half of Orange County residents (55%) worry about money at least fairly often. One in 10 say they never worry about money. These results are nearly identical to those of a decade ago, when we asked the question in the 1992 Orange County Annual Survey. Today, four in 10 county residents (39%) with household incomes of under $40,000 very often worry about money, compared to only 15 percent of those with household incomes of $80,000 or more. Latinos are more likely than whites (32% to 23%), women somewhat more likely than men (28% to 23%), and those under age 35 more likely than those age 55 and older (30% to 17%) to say they very often worry about money. Similarly, those with no college education are more likely than college graduates (34% to 20%), and renters are more likely than homeowners (35% to 20%), to say they worry a lot about money. People with children are also more likely than those without children (29% to 23%) to worry a lot about money. Reflecting the income differences across regions, North County residents are more likely than those in the South County to say they worry about money very often (28% to 21%). "How often do you worry about money?" Very often Fairly often Not too often Never All Adults 26% 29 36 9 Annual Household Income $40,000 <$40K 79,999 $80K + 39% 25% 15% 27 30 31 27 39 41 7 6 13 Race / Ethnicity White 23% 29 37 11 Latino 32% 28 35 5 Three in ten Orange County residents are either very concerned (14%) or somewhat concerned (16%) that they or someone in their family will lose their job in the next year. Similarly, 27 percent of Californians expressed at least some concern about job loss in the September 2002 Statewide Survey. In Orange County, Latinos (48%) are twice as likely as whites (23%) to express at least some concern about future unemployment. Concern about unemployment declines with income: 41 percent of those with incomes under $40,000 worry about a job loss, compared to 21 percent of those with incomes of $80,000 or more. The belief that the loss of a job might occur in the immediate family over the next year is higher among younger residents, those without any college education, renters, those with children in the home, and those who live in the North County. "Are you concerned that you or someone in your family will lose their job in the next year or not?" (If yes: "Are you very concerned or somewhat concerned?") Yes, very concerned Yes, somewhat concerned No / Don’t know All Adults 14% 16 70 Annual Household Income <$40K $40,00079,999 $80K+ 21% 13% 8% 20 15 13 59 72 79 Race / Ethnicity White 11% 12 77 Latino 21% 27 52 - 17 - December 2002 Economic and Political Trends Economic Inequality Recent demographic reports have focused attention on the income trends of the poor and the wealthy in the state today. Nearly six in 10 Orange County residents believe that California is divided into economic groups – the haves and have-nots. Thirty-seven percent do not believe this is the case. The percentage of county residents who perceive this division is nearly identical to the 61 percent of all Californians who reported this perception in the September 2002 Statewide Survey. Majorities of Orange County residents of all racial/ethnic groups, ages, educational attainment, and levels of income believe that the state is divided into economic groups. There are no differences in this perception between Latinos and whites, North and South County residents, and homeowners and renters. However, there are strong partisan and political differences: 66 percent of Democrats compared to 51 percent of Republicans, and 71 percent of liberals compared to 49 percent of conservatives, believe that the state is divided into economic groups. "Some people think that California is divided into economic groups – the haves and have-nots – while others think it is not divided that way. Do you think that California is divided into haves and have-nots, or do you think that California is not divided that way?" Divided into haves and have-nots Not divided that way Don’t know All Adults 59% 37 4 Annual Household Income <$40K $40,00079,999 $80K+ 62% 62% 56% 34 34 41 443 Race / Ethnicity White 60% 38 2 Latino 58% 37 5 When asked if they thought of themselves as in the have or have-not group, two in three Orange County residents considered themselves to be in the have group, and one in four thought they were among the have-nots. In the September 2002 PPIC Statewide Survey, 60 percent of Californians described themselves as haves, and 32 percent said they were among the have-nots. Responses to this question revealed a wide racial/ethnic gap: 75 percent of whites think of themselves as in the have group, while 51 percent of Latinos consider themselves to be have-nots. Nearly nine in 10 residents (87%) with annual household incomes of $80,000 or more rank themselves among the haves, compared to only 38 percent of those with incomes under $40,000. Homeowners and renters also have sharply different views when it comes to placing themselves in the have group (76% to 46%). Residents’ perceptions of being have-nots declines with age (36% of those under age 35 versus 15% of those age 55 and older) and education (47% of those with no college versus 14% of college graduates). South County residents are more likely than North County residents (73% to 61%) to consider themselves in the have group. "If you had to choose, which of these groups are you in – the haves or the have-nots?" Haves Have-nots Don’t know All Adults 65% 27 8 Annual Household Income <$40K $40,000 79,999 $80K + 38% 69% 87% 54 23 7 886 Race / Ethnicity White 75% 17 8 Latino 39% 51 10 - 18 - Economic and Political Trends Approval Ratings of the Governor Governor Gray Davis is not especially popular in Orange County today: 33 percent of the county's residents approve of his performance in office; 60 percent disapprove. In the November 2002 election, 35 percent of Orange county residents voted for Governor Davis, the incumbent Democrat, while 58 percent voted for his Republican challenger, Bill Simon. By comparison, in the October 2002 Statewide Survey, 52 percent of Californians approved and 43 percent disapproved of the governor’s overall performance in office. The governor’s approval ratings are only marginally higher among Orange County residents when they are asked more specifically about his handling of jobs and the economy: 34 percent approve and 55 percent disapprove. By comparison, in the September 2002 Statewide Survey, 45 percent of Californians approved and 40 percent disapproved of his handling of economic issues. In Orange County last year, Governor Davis’ overall approval ratings were somewhat higher than they are today: 40 percent approved and 53 percent disapproved of his overall performance in office. However, residents were highly negative of his handling of the state’s electricity problem (31 percent approved and 63 percent disapproved of the may he managed this issue). A major reason why Davis receives higher negative ratings in Orange County, compared to the state as a whole, is because of the partisan nature of the ratings. Orange County is more Republican than Democratic in voter registration, while the state as a whole is more Democratic than Republican. In Orange County, Republicans are highly negative in their ratings of Governor Davis’ overall performance and his specific performance in handling the economy. However, a solid majority of independents hold negative views of Davis as well, and only about half of his fellow Democrats approve of his job performance. Compared to a year ago, Davis’ overall approval ratings have declined across the political spectrum. Latinos are more than twice as likely as whites to approve of Davis’ handling of his job overall (53% to 25%) and with respect to economic issues (53% to 27%). Davis’ approval ratings, both overall and on economic issues, decline with age, education, homeownership, and income. South County residents are less likely than North County residents to approve of the job Davis is doing, both overall (27% to 36%) and on the economy (28% to 36%). All Party Registration Adults Democrat Republican Independent Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Gray Davis is handling his job as governor? Approve 33% 47% 14% 33% Disapprove 60 46 81 62 Don’t know 77 5 5 Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Davis is handling the issue of jobs and the economy in California? Approve 34% 47% 17% 33% Disapprove 55 42 73 57 Don’t know 11 11 10 10 - 19 - December 2002 Economic and Political Trends Approval Ratings of the President While Orange County residents are not particularly positive about their Democratic governor, they have shown increasing support for the Republican president. Prior to September 11th, 57 percent of Orange County residents said that they approved of the way George W. Bush was handling his job as president. Over the past year, that support has grown; and today, 68 percent of Orange County residents, and the same proportion of registered voters, say that they approve of the way President Bush is handling his job. By comparison, the October 2002 Statewide Survey showed that 60 percent of Californians approved and 36 percent disapproved of the president’s performance in office. A Gallup Poll conducted in November found that 68 percent of Americans approved and 27 percent disapproved of his performance in office, so these national ratings of the president are very similar to what we find in Orange County. There is a partisan split in residents’ perceptions of President Bush – as dramatic as (but less harsh than) their assessments of Governor Davis. Fewer than half of Orange County Democrats (46%), sixty percent of independents, and nearly nine in ten Republicans (89%) approve of Bush’s job performance. The president’s support, unlike the governor’s lower approval ratings, is consistent across different racial/ethnic groups, with two-thirds of both Latinos (67%) and whites (70%) expressing support for how he is handling his job as president. Bush’s overall approval ratings are fairly consistent across age, income, and education levels. Orange County residents are more guarded, however, in their assessment of Bush’s handling of economic issues. While more than half of all residents (57%) and registered voters (58%) say they support the way he has handled the economy, these ratings are lower than his overall support. Partisan divisions are again evident: One in three Democrats, about half of independents, and three in four Republicans say they approve of the president’s handling of economic issues. Conservatives are about twice as likely as liberals (76% to 37%) to approve of the president’s efforts in this area. Latinos and whites (58% to 59%) are equally supportive. Bush’s approval ratings on this issue are fairly constant across age, gender, income, and education. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that George W. Bush his handling his job as President of the United States? Approve Disapprove Don’t know Do you approve or disapprove of the way that President Bush is handling economic issues? Approve Disapprove Don’t know All Adults Party Registration Democrat Republican Independent 68% 27 5 46% 48 6 89% 9 2 60% 35 5 57% 37 6 35% 61 4 78% 16 6 49% 46 5 - 20 - Survey Methodology The Orange County Survey is a special edition of the PPIC Statewide Survey, which is directed by Mark Baldassare, research director at the Public Policy Institute of California, with assistance in research and writing from Jon Cohen, survey research manager, and Dorie Apollonio and Eliana Kaimowitz, survey research associates. The survey was conducted in collaboration with the School of Social Ecology at the University of California, Irvine; however, the survey methodology and questions and the content of this report were solely determined by Mark Baldassare. The findings of this survey are based on a telephone survey of 2,007 Orange County adult residents interviewed from November 6 to November 14, 2002. Interviewing took place on weekend days and weekday nights, using a computer-generated random sample of telephone numbers, ensuring that both listed and unlisted telephone numbers were called. All telephone exchanges in Orange County were eligible for calling. Telephone numbers in the survey sample were called up to five times to increase the likelihood of reaching eligible households. Once a household was reached, an adult respondent (18 or older) was randomly chosen for interviewing by using the “last birthday method” to avoid biases in age and gender. Each interview took an average of 20 minutes to complete. Interviewing was conducted in English or Spanish. Casa Hispana translated the survey into Spanish. We used recent U.S. Census and state figures to compare the demographic characteristics of the survey sample with characteristics of Orange County's adult population. The survey sample was closely comparable to the census and state figures. The survey data in this report were statistically weighted to account for any demographic differences. The sampling error for the total sample of 2,007 adults is +/- 2 percent at the 95 percent confidence level. This means that 95 times out of 100, the results will be within 2 percentage points of what they would be if all Orange County adults were interviewed. The sampling error for subgroups is larger. Sampling error is just one type of error to which surveys are subject. Results may also be affected by factors such as question wording, question order, and survey timing. Throughout the report, we refer to two geographic regions. North County refers to cities and communities north of the 55 Freeway, including Anaheim, Anaheim Hills, Brea, Buena Park, Costa Mesa, Cypress, Fountain Valley, Fullerton, Garden Grove, Huntington Beach, La Habra, La Palma, Los Alamitos, Midway City, Orange, Placentia, Rossmoor, Santa Ana, Seal Beach, Stanton, Sunset Beach, Tustin, Villa Park, Westminster, and Yorba Linda. South County refers to cities and communities south of the 55 Freeway, including Aliso Viejo, Capistrano Beach, Corona del Mar, Coto de Caza, Dana Point, El Toro, Irvine, Laguna Beach, Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, Laguna Woods, Lake Forest, Mission Viejo, Modjeska, Newport Beach, Portola Hills, Rancho Santa Margarita, San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano, Trabuco, and Trabuco Canyon. We present results for non-Hispanic whites (referred to in the tables and text as “whites”), Latinos, and Asians because each group accounts for a substantial number of the county’s adult population. We also contrast the opinions of registered Democrats and Republicans with those who are “independent” or decline to state. In some cases, we compare the Orange County Survey responses to responses in the 1982-2000 Orange County Annual Surveys at the University of California, Irvine; the PPIC Statewide Surveys, including the Special Survey of Orange County in 2001; Gallup Poll (November 2002); Washington Post-Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation-Harvard University survey (March 2001); NBC-Wall Street Journal Poll (September 1999) and the Index of Consumer Sentiment, Surveys of Consumer Attitudes, Survey Research Center, University of Michigan (October 2002). - 21 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY: SPECIAL SURVEY OF ORANGE COUNTY NOVEMBER 6—NOVEMBER 14, 2002 2,007 CALIFORNIA ADULT RESIDENTS; ENGLISH AND SPANISH MARGIN OF ERROR +/- 2% AT 95% CONFIDENCE LEVEL FOR TOTAL SAMPLE 1. First, I would like to ask you some questions about where you live. Is the place you currently live a single-family detached home; an attached home such as a condo, duplex, or town home; an apartment; or another type of dwelling? 56% single-family detached home 20 attached home 22 apartment 1 trailer / mobile home 1 other (specify) 2. How long have you lived at your current address— less than five years, five years to under 10 years, 10 years to under 20 years, or 20 years or more? 50% less than five years 21 five years to under 10 years 14 10 years to under 20 years 15 20 years or more 3. Do you own or rent your current residence? 61% own 38 rent 1 neither (volunteered) 4. Overall, how satisfied are you with the house or apartment you live in? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied? 65% very satisfied 27 somewhat satisfied 6 somewhat dissatisfied 2 very dissatisfied 5. And, overall, how satisfied are you with the neighborhood you live in? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied? 66% very satisfied 26 somewhat satisfied 5 somewhat dissatisfied 3 very dissatisfied Next, I’d like to ask how you would rate some of the public services in your local area. For each one, please tell me if you think they are excellent, good, fair, or poor. (rotate questions 6 to 9) 6. How about local freeways, streets, and roads? 19% excellent 47 good 24 fair 10 poor 7. How about local parks, beaches, and other public recreational facilities? 34% excellent 48 good 13 fair 3 poor 2 don’t know 8. How about local police protection? 37% excellent 46 good 11 fair 4 poor 2 don’t know 9. How about local public schools? 25% excellent 38 good 12 fair 5 poor 20 don’t know 10. Overall, how would you rate the performance of city government in solving problems in your city— excellent, good, fair, or poor? 11% excellent 47 good 27 fair 8 poor 1 don’t live in city (volunteered) 6 don’t know Next, we are interested in your opinions about the region or broader geographic area that you live in. I am going to read you a list of problems other people have told us about. For each one, please tell me if you think this is a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem in your part of Orange County. (rotate questions 11 to 15) 11. How about traffic congestion on freeways and major roads? 56% big problem 34 somewhat of a problem 9 not a problem 1 don’t know 12. How about population growth and development? 34% big problem 35 somewhat of a problem 29 not a problem 2 don’t know - 23 - 13. How about the availability of housing that you can afford? 48% big problem 29 somewhat of a problem 20 not a problem 3 don’t know 14. How about the lack of opportunities for well-paying jobs? 20% big problem 33 somewhat of a problem 37 not a problem 10 don’t know 15. How about air pollution? 16% big problem 40 somewhat of a problem 43 not a problem 1 don’t know 16. Next, we are interested in your opinions about Orange County as a whole. First, what do you think is the most important issue facing Orange County today? (code response, do not read list) 20% population growth, development, sprawl 16 traffic and transportation 12 housing costs, housing availability, housing affordability 8 jobs, the economy, unemployment 6 schools, education 5 crime, gangs 4 El Toro Marine Air base 3 environment and pollution 3 immigration, illegal immigration 1 poverty, the poor, homeless, welfare 1 drugs and drug abuse 1 government regulations 1 terrorism, security issues, bioterrorism, anthrax 8 other (specify) 11 don’t know 17. Thinking about the quality of life in Orange County, how do you think things are going—very well, somewhat well, somewhat badly, or very badly? 32% very well 57 somewhat well 9 somewhat badly 2 very badly 18. In the future, do you think that Orange County will be a better place to live than it is now, a worse place to live than it is now, or there will be no change? 33% better place 31 worse place 32 no change 4 don’t know 19. On another topic, how would you rate the performance of county government in solving problems in Orange County—excellent, good, fair, or poor? 5% excellent 37 good 38 fair 12 poor 8 don’t know 20. When your county government’s officials decide what policies to adopt, how much attention do you think they pay to what the people think—a lot, some, very little, or no attention? 12% a lot 49 some 28 very little 7 no attention 4 don’t know 21. In general, do you think the people who run the county government waste a lot, some, very little, or none of the money we pay in taxes? 35% waste a lot 46 waste some 10 waste very little 2 waste none 7 don’t know 22. On another topic, are you familiar with the Great Park Plan for the reuse of the El Toro Marine Base? (if yes: Do you know a lot or little about it?) 25% yes, a lot 46 yes, a little 29 no 23. As you may know, the Great Park Plan will turn the El Toro Marine Base into an urban park including both open space and recreational facilities. The plan also leaves about 15 percent of the land for commercial and residential development. Do you favor or oppose the Great Park plan? 65% favor 24 oppose 11 don’t know 24. Do you favor or oppose using your local tax dollars to help fund the Great Park project? 49% favor 44 oppose 7 don’t know - 24 - 25. Would you favor or oppose setting aside some of the residential development included in the Great Park plan for affordable housing? 71% favor 25 oppose 4 don’t know 26. And do you think that you will use the Great Park for recreational purposes? (if yes: Do you think you will use it often, sometimes, or rarely?) 13% yes, often 30 yes, sometimes 14 yes, rarely 39 no 4 don’t know 27. Next, I am going to ask you about a term that not everyone will have heard of. Have you heard about “infrastructure?” (if yes: Do you know a lot or a little about it?) 24% yes, a lot 36 yes, a little 40 no 28. You may know the term “infrastructure” refers to public works projects—such as surface transportation, water systems, school facilities, sewers, and airports. Which infrastructure project do you think should have the top priority for public funds in Orange County? (read list, rotate) 45% school facilities 27 surface transportation 13 water systems 7 sewer systems 5 airports 1 other (specify) 2 don’t know 29. What type of transportation project do you think should have the top priority for public funds in Orange County? (read list, rotate) 39% freeways and highways 21 light rail system 16 local streets and roads 14 public bus system 7 carpool lanes 3 don’t know 30. How important is the condition of the roads and other infrastructure to the quality of life and economic vitality in Orange County—very important, somewhat important, or not important? 73% very important 25 somewhat important 2 not important 31. Overall, do you think that local government does or does not have adequate funding for the roads and other infrastructure projects that are needed to prepare Orange County for future growth? 53% does 31 does not 16 don’t know 32. The local sales tax that is collected by local governments is one of the major funding sources for local transportation projects, and state law requires that it must be approved by two-thirds of the voters in a local election. Do you think that requiring a two-thirds majority vote—instead of a simple majority or 50 percent-plus-one vote—for passing a local sales tax for local transportation projects is a good thing or a bad thing? 71% good thing 23 bad thing 6 don'tknow 33. What if there was a state ballot measure that would change the two-thirds majority to a 55 percent vote for passing a local sales tax for transportation projects? Would you vote yes or no? 43% yes 50 no 7 don’t know 34. Measure M, the one-half cent sales tax approved by voters in Orange County, funds freeway projects, public transit, and local street improvements. In general, how satisfied are you with the way the Measure M funds are being used for transportation projects in Orange County— very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, or not satisfied? 14% very satisfied 54 somewhat satisfied 18 not satisfied 14 don’t know 35. Currently, the Measure M sales tax is set to expire in 2011. However, this tax can be extended beyond 2011 by a countywide vote. If an election were held today, would you vote yes or no on an Orange County ballot measure to extend the half-cent sales tax for local transportation projects for another 20 years to fund transportation projects in Orange County? 62% yes 30 no 8 don’t know 36. What if this half-cent local sales tax measure in Orange County included funding for both transportation projects and other infrastructure projects? If an election were held today, would you vote yes or no? 62% yes 29 no 9 don’t know - 25 - December 2002 37. On another topic, would you say you (and your family) are financially better off or worse off than you were a year ago? 50% better off 30 worse off 19 same 1 don’t know 38. Looking ahead, do you think that a year from now you (and your family) will be financially better off, worse off, or just about the same as now? 47% better off 8 worse off 41 same 4 don’t know 39. Turning to business conditions in the country as a whole, do you think that during the next 12 months we will have good times financially or bad times? 47% good times 44 bad times 9 don’t know 40. Looking ahead, in the country as a whole, will we have continued good times during the next 5 years, or will we have periods of widespread unemployment or depression? 46% good times 44 periods of unemployment or depression 10 don’t know 41. Thinking about the big things that people buy for their homes, such as furniture, a refrigerator, a stove, a television, and things like that, generally speaking, do you think now is a good or a bad time for people to buy major household items? 61% good time 28 bad time 11 don’t know 42. Do you think that buying a home in Orange County is an excellent, good, fair, or poor investment? 35% excellent 44 good 12 fair 8 poor 1 don’t know 43. In general, how satisfied are you with your current financial situation? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, or not satisfied? 24% very satisfied 55 somewhat satisfied 21 not satisfied 44. Thinking about your household income, would you say that you have more than enough so that you can save money or buy some extras, just enough to meet your bills and obligations, or not enough to meet your bills and obligations? 38% more than enough 49 just enough 13 not enough 45. How often do you worry about money—very often, fairly often, not too often, or never? 26% very often 29 fairly often 36 not too often 9 never 46. In general, how would you rate the economy in Orange County today? Would you say it is excellent, good, fair, or poor? 8% excellent 50 good 34 fair 6 poor 2 don’t know 47. Would you say that Orange County is in an economic recession or not? (if yes: Do you think it is in a serious, a moderate, or a mild recession?) 5% yes, serious recession 20 yes, moderate recession 12 yes, mild recession 54 no 9 don’t know 48. Are you concerned that you or someone in your family will lose their job in the next year or not? (if yes: Are you very concerned or somewhat concerned?) 14% yes, very concerned 16 yes, somewhat concerned 69 no 1 don’t know 49. Some people think that California is divided into economic groups, the haves and have-nots, while others think it is not divided that way. Do you think that California is divided into haves and have-nots, or do you think that California is not divided that way? 59% divided into haves and have-nots 37 not divided that way 4 don’t know 50. If you had to choose, which of these groups are you in—the haves or have-nots? 65% haves 27 have-nots 8 don’t know - 26 - 51. Do you think that in California today (rotate) (a) all people have an equal opportunity to get ahead, or (b) the government should do more to make sure that all Californians have an equal opportunity to get ahead. 56% people have equal opportunity 37 government should do more 2 both (volunteered) 2 neither (volunteered) 3 don’t know 52. On another topic, some people are registered to vote and others are not. Are you absolutely certain that you are registered to vote? (if yes: Are you registered as a Democrat, a Republican, another party, or as an independent?) 22% Yes, Democrat 35 Yes, Republican 3 Yes, other party 12 Yes, independent / “decline to state” 3 Yes, refuse to say party 25 No, not registered 53. Would you consider yourself to be politically very liberal, somewhat liberal, middle-of-the-road, somewhat conservative, or very conservative? 8% very liberal 21 somewhat liberal 30 middle-of-the-road 27 somewhat conservative 11 very conservative 3 don’t know 54. On another topic, overall, do you approve or disapprove of the way that George W. Bush is handling his job as president of the United States? 68% approve 27 disapprove 5 don’t know 55. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that President Bush is handling economic issues? 57% approve 37 disapprove 6 don’t know 56. And turning to the state, overall do you approve or disapprove of the way that Gray Davis is handling his job as governor of California? 33% approve 60 disapprove 7 don’t know 57. Do you approve or disapprove of the way that Governor Davis is handling the issue of jobs and the economy in California? 34% approve 55 disapprove 11 don’t know - 27 - 58. On another subject, Orange County is home to increasing numbers of people from many different racial and ethnic groups—including Asians, Latinos, black, and whites. On balance, do you think that having increasing numbers of people from different racial and ethnic groups makes Orange County a better place to live or a worse place to live, or doesn’t it make much difference either way? 38% better place to live 12 worse place to live 47 doesn’t make much difference either way 3 don’t know 59. In your own daily life, how often do you come into contact with people from racial groups different from your own—very often, fairly often, once in a while, or hardly ever? 71% very often 14 fairly often 10 once in a while 5 hardly ever 60. How do you think you would react if someone in your family told you they were going to marry someone from another racial or ethnic group? Would it be fine with you, would it bother you but you would come to accept it, or would you not be able to accept it? (if necessary: By family we mean a member of your immediate family such as a child, brother, or sister) 79% would be fine with it 16 would bother me, but would come to accept it 2 would not be able to accept it 3 don’t know [61-63: demographic questions] 64. How do you usually commute to work—drive alone, carpool, public bus or transit, or some other means? 80% drive alone 10 carpool 4 public bus or transit 3 work at home (volunteered) 3 other (specify) 65. Overall, how satisfied are you with your commute to work? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied? 47% very satisfied 30 somewhat satisfied 12 somewhat dissatisfied 9 very dissatisfied 2 don’t know [66-70: demographic questions] December 2002 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Advisory Committee Mary Bitterman President The James Irvine Foundation Angela Blackwell President Policy Link Paul Brest President The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation Mollyann Brodie Vice President Kaiser Family Foundation Bruce E. Cain Director Institute of Governmental Studies University of California, Berkeley Matt Fong Chairman Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation Advisory Committee William Hauck President California Business Roundtable Sherry Bebitch Jeffe Senior Scholar School of Policy, Planning, and Development University of Southern California Monica Lozano President and Chief Operating Officer La Opinión Donna Lucas President NCG Porter Novelli Max Neiman Director Center for Social and Behavioral Research University of California, Riverside Dan Rosenheim News Director KPIX-TV Richard Schlosberg President and CEO The David and Lucile Packard Foundation Carol Stogsdill President Stogsdill Consulting Cathy Taylor Vice President and Editorial Commentary Director Orange County Register Raymond L. Watson Vice Chairman of the Board The Irvine Company Carol Whiteside President Great Valley Center - 28 - PUBLIC POLICY INSTITUTE OF CALIFORNIA Board of Directors Raymond L. Watson, Chairman Vice Chairman of the Board The Irvine Company William K. Coblentz Senior Partner Coblentz, Patch, Duffy & Bass, LLP Edward K. Hamilton Chairman Hamilton, Rabinovitz & Alschuler, Inc. Walter B. Hewlett Director Center for Computer Assisted Research in the Humanities David W. Lyon President and CEO Public Policy Institute of California Cheryl White Mason Chief, Civil Liability Management Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office Arjay Miller Dean Emeritus Graduate School of Business Stanford University Ki Suh Park Design and Managing Partner Gruen Associates A. Alan Post Former State Legislative Analyst State of California Constance L. Rice Co-Director The Advancement Project Thomas C. Sutton Chairman & CEO Pacific Life Insurance Company Cynthia A. Telles Department of Psychiatry UCLA School of Medicine Carol Whiteside President Great Valley Center Harold M. Williams President Emeritus The J. Paul Getty Trust and Of Counsel Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP Advisory Council Clifford W. Graves Vice Chancellor, Physical Planning University of California, Merced Elizabeth G. Hill Legislative Analyst State of California Hilary W. Hoynes Associate Professor Department of Economics University of California, Davis Andrés E. Jiménez Director California Policy Research Center University of California, Berkeley, Office of the President Rudolf Nothenberg Chief Administrative Officer (Retired) City and County of San Francisco Manuel Pastor Professor, Latin American & Latino Studies University of California, Santa Cruz Peter Schrag Contributing Editor The Sacramento Bee James P. Smith Senior Economist RAND PUBLIC POLICY INSTITUTE OF CALIFORNIA 500 Washington Street, Suite 800 San Francisco, California 94111 Phone: (415) 291-4400 Fax: (415) 291-4401 www.ppic.org info@ppic.org" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 09:36:05" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(9) "s_1202mbs" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 02:36:05" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 09:36:05" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["guid"]=> string(51) "http://148.62.4.17/wp-content/uploads/S_1202MBS.pdf" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_mime_type"]=> string(15) "application/pdf" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" ["status"]=> string(7) "inherit" ["attachment_authors"]=> bool(false) }