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object(Timber\Post)#3742 (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_1199MBS.pdf" ["wpmf_size"]=> string(6) "314522" ["wpmf_filetype"]=> string(3) "pdf" ["wpmf_order"]=> string(1) "0" ["searchwp_content"]=> string(69123) "The Public Policy Institute of California is an independent, nonpartisan research organization established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. The Institute is dedicated to raising public awareness of issues and giving elected representatives and other public officials in California a more informed basis for developing policies and programs. 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 - i -PrefaceThe Central Valley Survey — a collaborative effort of the Public Policy Institute of California and the GreatValley Center — is a special edition of the PPIC Statewide Survey. This survey was co-sponsored by the GreatValley Center with support from KVIE-TV in Sacramento.The purpose of the survey is to provide the first comprehensive, advocacy-free study of the attitudes and publicpolicy preferences of Central Valley residents. The Central Valley has been a subject of great interest to researchersand state and national leaders for some time because of its increasing role in the social, economic, and political lifeof California.The Central Valley — the inland area of California stretching 400 miles from Bakersfield to Redding — ishome to 5 million residents and is one of the fastest growing areas of the state. Latinos now account for one-fourthof the Central Valley population, and growth in the Latino population is expected to accelerate over the next fewdecades. Because the region is the agricultural center of the state — and because agriculture is the state’s leadingindustry — the urbanization of farmland in the Central Valley is of great concern to policymakers. Since neither ofthe major political parties has a large voter registration advantage in this region, the Central Valley is considered oneof the most critical "swing regions" in the state, consisting of independent-minded voters who can have atremendous effect on statewide elections.This survey of 2,016 adult residents provides “benchmark” questions for measuring changes in key indicatorsover time and includes comparisons with other major regions of California and with the state as a whole. Weexplored the following issues:· Variations in the social, economic, and political attitudes and policy preferences across four different regions ofthe Central Valley (i.e., North Valley, Sacramento Metro, North San Joaquin, and South San Joaquin), betweenLatinos and non-Hispanic whites, between newcomers and life-long residents, and across the socioeconomicspectrum.· Local ratings, including evaluations of the community, local public services, and city and county government.· Regional perceptions, including appraisals of regional problems, satisfaction with key amenities andopportunities, and observations on traffic congestion.· Central Valley issues, including thoughts about specific problems, the regional economy, living in the CentralValley, population growth, water, and policies for improving quality of life in the Central Valley.· Political and social trends, including civic and religious involvement, political profile, sources of politicalinformation, and use of computers and the internet.Copies of this report may be ordered by calling (800) 232-5343 [mainland U.S.] or (415) 291-4415 [Canada,Hawaii, overseas]. - ii - - iii - Contents Preface i Press Release v Local Ratings 1 Regional Perceptions 5 Central Valley Issues 11 Political and Social Trends 17 Survey Methodology 21 Survey Questions and Results 23 Survey Advisory Committee 28 - v- Press Release CENTRAL VALLEY RESIDENTS EXPRESS SATISFACTION WITH THEIR COMMUNITIES AND QUALITY OF LIFE, AMBIVALENCE ABOUT THE FUTURE Growth-Related Issues Create Uncertainty, Conflict SAN FRANCISCO, California, November 18, 1999 Ñ In contrast to the perceptions of many outsiders, residents of the Central Valley are content with life in the stateÕs heartland, with over half believing that the region is the best place to live in California today. However, a new survey just released by the Public Policy Institute of California and the Great Valley Center also reveals profound uncertainty about the future of the region, driven largely by conflicting views about the costs and benefits of growth. The large-scale public opinion survey of the 18-county Central Valley region found that three in four residents rate their community as an excellent or good place to live. Fifty-five percent rate the economy in the region excellent (9%) or good (46%). Most residents are ÒveryÓ or ÒsomewhatÓ satisfied with the availability of public colleges and universities (48% and 38%), outdoor leisure activities (43% and 39%), and affordable housing (37% and 43%). Solid majorities say the quality of local public services they receive is excellent or good, including police protection (69%), parks and other recreational facilities (68%), public libraries (60%), public schools (59%), and local freeways, streets, and roads (58%). ÒInterestingly, many quality of life measures in the Central Valley today are as good or better than those in coastal urban regions of the state,Ó said PPIC Statewide Survey Director Mark Baldassare. ÒThe one big exception is that people in the Central Valley are not as satisfied as residents in Los Angeles or the San Francisco Bay Area with job opportunities in their region.Ó Growth, Associated Issues Are Key Concerns Although they are feeling good right now, Central Valley residents admit to having qualms about tomorrow. They are evenly divided when asked if the Central Valley will be a better place or a worse place in the future (37% to 33%), with only about one in four residents saying it will stay the same. Much of the uncertainty about what the future holds for the Central Valley appears to stem from a common perception the region is growing at a tremendous rate. Seventy-seven percent believe that the population of the region has been growing rapidly in recent years, and 74 percent think that the population will continue to increase rapidly in the next decade. When residents were asked to name the most important public policy issue facing the Central Valley today, a group of five growth-related issues took precedence. Nearly half of those surveyed said that water (13%), the environment and pollution (10%), population growth and development (8%), loss of farmlands and agriculture (8%), and traffic and transportation (6%) are the biggest problems. Given the expectations and concerns about rapid growth, residents support a variety of policies Ñ some of them contradictory Ñ for improving the regionÕs quality of life over the next 10 years. When residents rated eight policy options, protecting agricultural lands (52%) and preserving wetlands (49%) were identified as Òextremely effectiveÓ policies by half of those surveyed. However, only one- third said that restricting development to existing suburban and urban areas would be Òextremely effective.Ó Eighty- Press Release - vi- one percent also said they would support expanding the stateÕs reservoir system to help the Valley meet future water needs. ÒThere is a real challenge here for local leaders,Ó said Carol Whiteside, President of the Great Valley Center. ÒAt the same time residents express support for policy prescriptions that would protect the natural environment and preserve farmlands, they want more water storage systems and are lukewarm about limiting development. Some tough choices lie ahead for Central Valley communities.Ó Region Defies Labels, Lacks Common Vision While many observers view the Central Valley as a bastion of conservative politics, in reality the region is less easy to label. Compared to all Californians, Central Valley residents are a little more likely to identify themselves as conservative (35% to 41%). However, relatively few Valley residents consider themselves to be ÒveryÓ conservative (13%). The majority (58%) identify themselves as middle-of-the-road to somewhat conservative in their politics. There are also significant regional differences within the Central Valley on many key issues, most notably among residents of the North Valley and people who live in the Sacramento Metro area. For example, North Valley residents are less likely to describe themselves as liberal, while fewer Sacramento Metro residents say they are conservative. North Valley residents are less likely to rate the economy as excellent or good (37%), while Sacramento Metro residents are the most positive (74%). Paradoxically, North Valley residents are also the most likely (59%), and Sacramento Metro residents the least likely (47%), to agree with the statement, ÒThe Central Valley is the best place to live in California today.Ó The views of Latinos Ñ who represent a large and growing segment of the ValleyÕs population Ñ also differ sharply from non-Hispanic whites in a number of key areas. Latinos (24%) were less than half as likely as non- Hispanic whites (53%) to name a growth-related problem as the most important policy issue facing the region. By contrast, Latinos were more likely than non-Hispanic whites to name crime and gangs (12% to 7%), jobs (9% to 4%), and schools (8% to 4%) as the top issues. While most Central Valley residents believe that the new University of California campus at Merced is important to the future economy and quality of life in the region, Latinos are far more likely (75%) than non-Hispanic whites (46%) to rate it as Òvery important.Ó Although they give the Central Valley high marks as a place to live, most residents do not appear to identify strongly with the region as a whole. If they were traveling outside the area and were asked where they lived, only one in five would say they were from the Central Valley, while two in three would name their city or community. People in the southern areas of the Central Valley were more likely than people in other regions to identify the Central Valley as their home. ÒThis survey points to the incredible geographic and social diversity of the area we call the Central Valley,Ó said Baldassare. ÒWhile it is difficult to identify a common regional vision, there are many common challenges that could have profound effects on the state as a whole. State policymakers need to pay close attention to what is happening here Ñ the region is poised to play an increasingly vital role in CaliforniaÕs social, political, and economic way of life.Ó About the Survey The Central Valley Survey Ñ a collaborative effort of the Public Policy Institute of California and the Great Valley Center Ñ is a special edition of the PPIC Statewide Survey. The purpose of this survey is to provide the first comprehensive, advocacy-free study of the political, social, and economic attitudes and public policy preferences of Central Valley residents. Press Release - vii- Findings are based on a telephone survey of 2,016 California adult residents in the 18-county Central Valley region, interviewed from October 18 to October 24, 1999. Interviews were conducted in English or Spanish. The sampling error for the total sample is +/- 2%. For additional information on survey methodology, see page 21. Dr. Mark Baldassare is a senior fellow at PPIC. He is founder and director of the Orange County Annual Survey which he has conducted at UC Irvine since 1982. For over two decades, he has conducted surveys for major news organizations, including the Orange County Edition of the Los Angeles Times, the Orange County Register, the San Francisco Chronicle, KCAL-TV, and KRON-TV. Dr. Baldassare is the author of a forthcoming book on the changing social and political landscape of California (expected in April 2000). PPIC is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to objective, nonpartisan research on economic, social, and political issues that affect the lives of Californians. The Institute was established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. This report will appear on PPICÕs Web site (www.ppic.org) on November 18, 1999. ### - 1 - Local Ratings Community Perceptions For most Central Valley residents, life is a small town or rural experience. Although most Sacramento Metro residents describe themselves as living in a large city or suburb (61%), two in three residents in the other three regions say they live in small cities or towns or rural areas. Latinos are a little more likely than non-Hispanic whites (71% to 65%) to say they live in a small city or town or rural area and less likely to say they live in a suburb (7% to 14%). Central Valley residents are overwhelmingly content with their communities. Three in four rate their community as excellent (26%) or good (47%), one in five say it is fair, and only 6 percent say it is poor. Although people in all regions give their communities mostly positive ratings, Sacramento Metro residents are the most likely (31%) to say their community is excellent. Latinos (19%) are less likely than non-Hispanic whites (28%) to give the place where they live an excellent rating, but most in each group give positive evaluations. Lifelong residents of the Central Valley and those who have moved there in the past five years give equally positive ratings of their communities. "Which of the following best describes the place where you now live?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Large city 21% 3% 34% 14% 21% 22% Suburb12 5 27 6 6 7 Small city or town48 58 27 63 52 59 Rural area, other*19 34 12 17 21 12 *1 percent gave other responses. "Overall, how would you rate your community as a place to live?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Excellent 26% 26% 31% 24% 22% 19% Good47 48 49 46 46 45 Fair21 22 17 22 25 26 Poor 6 4 3 8 7 10 Local Ratings - 2 - Local Public Services The ratings that Central Valley residents give local public services are consistent with the favorable ratings they give their communities. More than two-thirds say their local police protection and parks and other recreational facilities are excellent or good. Six in 10 are similarly positive about their local public libraries, their public schools, and local freeways, streets, and roads. Across all regions, residents are more likely to rate services as good than as excellent. For example, fewer than one in four give excellent ratings to their parks and recreation facilities (23%) and police (21%), and about one in six give excellent ratings to public schools (16%). Nevertheless, the generally favorable reaction is borne out by the low percentage who give ÒpoorÓ ratings to any of the local public services, including police (7%), parks and recreation (8%), public libraries (8%), public schools (9%), and local roads (10%). Compared with ratings in California as a whole (in the PPIC Statewide Survey), the excellent or good ratings that Central Valley residents give to local police and parks are on a par with California averages. Ratings of local roads and public schools are even better than for California as a whole. There are no comparable statewide figures on ratings of local public libraries. Ratings of local public services do vary across regions. In the Sacramento Metro region, local parks receive more excellent or good ratings (76%) and local public schools get less positive ratings (54%) than elsewhere. The North Valley gives local public libraries (48%) and local police (62%) lower ratings but local roads more positive evaluations than other regions do. Looking at evaluations across different demographic groups, the survey found that Latinos and non-Hispanic whites rate local public services similarly. People who have lived in the Central Valley for less than five years are less likely than longer-term residents to give good or excellent ratings to public schools (51% to 62%) and public libraries (51% to 64%). There are more excellent and good ratings of police protection from residents in households earning $80,000 or more (79%) than from those having incomes under $40,000 (65%). Local Ratings - 3 - "How would you rate some of the public services you receive in your local area?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Police protection Excellent 21% 17% 22% 19% 22% 23% Good48 45 49 47 49 46 Fair22 26 20 22 21 23 Poor 7 9 6 9 6 7 Don't know 2 3 3 3 2 1 Parks and other public recreational facilities Excellent 23% 21% 30% 23% 18% 23% Good45 48 46 43 43 43 Fair22 22 18 24 25 23 Poor 8 7 5 71210 Don't know 2 2 1 3 2 1 Local public libraries Excellent 15% 8% 14% 17% 18% 16% Good45 40 46 42 47 49 Fair21 22 23 20 21 18 Poor 817 710 6 8 Don't know11 13 10 11 8 9 Local public schools Excellent 16% 15% 16% 13% 20% 18% Good43 51 38 45 43 41 Fair23 24 24 23 21 25 Poor 9 610 9 810 Don't know 9 41210 8 6 Local freeways, streets, and roads Excellent 12% 12% 10% 11% 13% 17% Good46 52 48 46 42 41 Fair32 23 32 33 34 30 Poor10 13 9 10 11 12 Don't know 0 0 1 0 0 0 Local Ratings - 4 - Local Government The good feelings Central Valley residents have about their communities and local public services aren't reflected in their opinions about their local governments. Only four in 10 say their city government is doing an excellent (5%) or good (34%) job of solving city or community problems. A similar four in 10 rate it as fair, and one in six say its performance is poor. Across regions, Sacramento Metro residents are the least likely (11%) to give government poor ratings. Across ethnic groups, Latinos are more likely (50%) than non-Hispanic whites (36%) to give their city governments either excellent or good grades. Ratings for county government are fairly similar, with four in 10 people saying that their county government is doing an excellent (3%) or good (38%) job in solving county problems. Four in 10 rate their county government as fair, and one in eight say it is doing a poor job. There are no major differences across regions. Once again, Latinos (49%) are more likely than non-Hispanic whites (37%) to give their county governments good or higher ratings. There are no comparable statewide figures for the ratings of local government, since these questions have yet to be asked in the PPIC Statewide Survey. However, in the 1999 Orange County Annual Survey, Orange County residents were more likely than Central Valley residents to give their city government excellent or good ratings (50%) but rated their county government about the same, with 40 percent considering it excellent or good. "How would you rate the performance of your city government in solving problems in your city or community?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Excellent5% 4% 5% 6% 6% 8% Good34 32 37 33 32 42 Fair38 39 39 35 39 33 Poor15 18 11 17 16 13 Don't know, don't live in a city 8 7 8 9 7 4 "How would you rate the performance of county government in solving problems in your county?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Excellent3% 4% 3% 4% 4% 7% Good38 33 39 37 38 42 Fair42 44 41 41 41 39 Poor13 16 12 11 13 9 DonÕt know 4 3 5 7 4 3 - 5 - Regional Perceptions Regional Problems Although they are highly satisfied with their local communities, Central Valley residents readily admit to having problems in their regions. When asked how much of a problem certain things are in their region, residents rated the following as "big" or "some" problem: crime and gangs (70%), air pollution (69%), traffic congestion (59%), growth and development (56%), and the loss of agriculture and farmlands (51%). However, the perception of severity changes somewhat if we consider the percentage of residents that see an issue as a "big" problem: About one-in-four rate air pollution (28%), traffic congestion (23%), the loss of farmlands and agriculture (23%), and growth and development (21%) as "big problems." Fewer say that crime and gangs (18%) and racial and ethnic tensions (8%) are big problems in their regions. In comparison with results of the PPIC Statewide Survey, traffic congestion and growth and development are rated as less serious problems in the Central Valley than in the Los Angeles region or San Francisco Bay area. There are no state comparisons available on perceptions of crime and gangs, air pollution, racial and ethnic tensions, or the loss of farmlands as problems. The regions of the Central Valley differ in their perceptions of regional problems. A much higher percentage of Sacramento Metro residents give "big problem" ratings to traffic congestion (44%), air pollution (34%), and growth and development (31%). In the South San Joaquin area, crime and gangs are perceived as a big problem (23%). The loss of farmlands is most often viewed as at least somewhat of a problem in the North San Joaquin area (60%). North Valley residents are the most likely to say that air pollution (42%), traffic congestion (49%), loss of farmlands (53%), and growth and development (56%) are "not a problem" for their region. Problem perceptions also differ somewhat among ethnic groups. Latinos are less likely than non-Hispanic whites to see traffic congestion (16% to 25%), growth (12% to 24%), air pollution (18% to 30%), and the loss of farmlands (18% to 26%) as big problems, while views are similar across these groups on crime and gangs and racial and ethnic tensions. Length of residence contributes to different perceptions, as well. People who have lived in the Central Valley less than five years are less likely than people who have lived there all of their lives to see loss of farmlands as a big problem (17% to 24%, respectively). Newcomers to the Central Valley are also more likely than lifelong residents to say that crime and gangs (43% to 26%), growth and development (52% to 43%), traffic congestion (51% to 40%), and racial and ethnic tensions (58% to 43%) are not problems in their regions. Those with higher household incomes and higher educational levels are more likely than others to say that traffic congestion, growth and development, air pollution, and loss of farmlands are currently big problems in their regions. Those with lower incomes are more likely to say that crime and gangs are a big problem. Regional Perceptions - 6 - "In your region, how much of a problem is __________ ? Is it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Air pollution* Big problem 28% 25% 34% 23% 28% 18% Some problem41 33 47 46 37 36 Not a problem30 42 19 30 35 45 Don't know 1 0 0 1 0 1 Traffic congestion Big problem 23% 9% 44% 21% 11% 16% Some problem36 41 38 39 31 28 Not a problem41 49 18 40 57 55 Don't know 0 1 0 0 1 1 Loss of farms and agriculture Big problem 23% 12% 22% 28% 24% 18% Some problem28 29 28 32 27 23 Not a problem41 53 41 32 43 52 Don't know 8 6 9 8 6 7 Population growth, urban development Big problem 21% 9% 31% 20% 16% 12% Some problem35 33 37 37 32 27 Not a problem43 56 31 41 51 60 Don't know 1 2 1 2 1 1 Crime and gangs Big problem 18% 13% 13% 18% 23% 22% Some problem52 55 53 55 50 44 Not a problem29 32 32 26 27 34 Don't know 1 0 2 1 0 0 Racial/ethnic tensions Big problem 8% 9% 5% 7% 10% 10% Some problem41 39 39 44 42 36 Not a problem49 50 53 48 46 52 Don't know 2 2 3 1 2 2 * Respondents were asked to rate air pollution aside from the impact of recent fires. Regional Perceptions - 7 - Regional Satisfaction The survey asked Central Valley residents how they feel about public colleges and universities, outdoor leisure activities, housing they can afford, and job opportunities in their regions. Earlier, the PPIC Statewide Survey showed that Central Valley residents are more satisfied with the affordability of housing and less satisfied with job opportunities than those living in the Los Angeles region or San Francisco Bay area. In this survey, we found that, in general, Central Valley residents are at least somewhat satisfied with the availability of housing they can afford (80%) and job opportunities (64%) in their region. More than four in 10 residents of the Central Valley say they are very satisfied with the public colleges and universities (48%) and outdoor leisure activities (43%) available in their region, one in three gives high praise to the housing that they can afford (37%), while only one-quarter are very satisfied with the job opportunities available in their region. Once again, there are considerable regional differences. Sacramento Metro residents are the most highly pleased with the availability of job opportunities (39%) and public colleges and universities (55%). Those living in the North Valley region (47%) and the Sacramento Metro area (53%) are the most pleased with the outdoor leisure activities available to them. South San Joaquin residents are the most likely to say they are very satisfied with the supply of housing they can afford (45%). Only 6 percent of North Valley residents are very happy about the job market in their region, and 52 percent are Ònot satisfiedÓ with the employment prospects. Latinos and non-Hispanic whites are about equally satisfied with job opportunities, affordable housing, and outdoor leisure activities. However, Latinos are less likely than non-Hispanic whites to say they are very satisfied with the availability of public colleges and universities in their region (39% to 51%). Satisfaction also varies by income, education, and length of time lived in the Central Valley. Residents with higher annual household incomes and higher educational levels are more likely than others to say they are very satisfied with the job opportunities, housing, outdoor activities, and public colleges and universities that their regions offer. Newcomers to the Central Valley are more likely than lifelong residents to say they are very satisfied with the availability of outdoor recreational activities (47% to 37%), but otherwise the two groups are similarly satisfied with their regions. Regional Perceptions - 8 - "How do you feel about the ____________ available in your region? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, or not satisfied?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Public colleges and universities Very satisfied 48% 49% 55% 48% 41% 39% Somewhat satisfied38 40 36 37 40 44 Not satisfied10 9 5101513 Don't know 4 2 4 5 4 4 Outdoor leisure activities Very satisfied 43% 47% 53% 37% 38% 40% Somewhat satisfied39 37 35 41 41 38 Not satisfied16 14 11 20 19 20 Don't know 2 2 1 2 2 2 Housing that you can afford Very satisfied 37% 28% 31% 36% 45% 36% Somewhat satisfied43 46 45 42 40 44 Not satisfied18 21 21 19 14 20 Don't know 2 5 3 3 1 0 Job opportunities Very satisfied 23% 6% 39% 19% 19% 26% Somewhat satisfied41 39 44 39 41 43 Not satisfied31 52 12 38 36 29 Don't know 5 3 5 4 4 2 Regional Perceptions - 9 - Regional Commuting Trends For most Central Valley residents, traffic congestion and commuting are not major issues. Over half of the employed residents surveyed say that traffic congestion when they travel to work is no problem. However, one in six say that traffic is a great problem, and one-third say it is somewhat of a problem. The commuting experience varies significantly by region. Sacramento Metro residents are the most likely to say they have a great problem (26%) or somewhat of a problem (38%) with traffic congestion while traveling to and from work. By comparison, half of North San Joaquin residents, four in 10 of South San Joaquin residents, and three in 10 of North Valley residents have at least some problem with traffic congestion. Few in the North Valley (7%) or South San Joaquin (8%) regions have a great problem during their commutes. There are no differences between Latinos and non-Hispanic whites in commuting perceptions. Nor are there variations in the experiences with traffic congestion on the way to and from work by household income, education level, or by length of residence in the Central Valley. One in eight employed residents in the Central Valley say they commute to workplaces in the San Francisco Bay area (9%) or the Los Angeles region (3%). More employed residents in the North San Joaquin area (20%) commute to the two major coastal metropolitan regions than do in the Sacramento Metro (11%), South San Joaquin (10%), or North Valley areas (6%). Latinos and non-Hispanic whites have similar rates of commuting outside of the Central Valley region. There are no major differences in long-distance commuting outside of the region by income group or educational levels. Newcomers who have lived in the Central Valley for less than five years are the most likely (20%) to say they travel to work in the coastal metropolitan regions. "On a typical day, how much of a problem is traffic congestion when you travel to and from work?" (asked of those who are employed) Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Great problem 15% 7% 26% 17% 8% 13% Some problem32 22 38 33 30 34 No problem53 71 36 50 62 53 "Do you commute to work in the California coastal metropolitan regions? (asked of those who are employed)" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Yes 12% 6% 11% 20% 10% 16% No88 94 89 80 90 84 - 11 - Central Valley Issues Most Important Issue When residents were asked to identify the most important issue facing the Central Valley, a group of five growth-related issues took precedence. Nearly half of those surveyed said that water (13%), the environment and pollution (10%), population growth (8%), loss of farmlands and agriculture (8%), and traffic and transportation (6%) are the biggest problems. Crime (8%), schools (6%), and jobs (5%) were named by about two in 10 residents. Ten percent named a variety of other issues. One in four were unable to cite any particular issue as being most important. Perceptions about the importance of issues varied across regions. In the North Valley, water was identified as the top policy issue. In the Sacramento Metro region, higher percentages focused on the environment, growth, and traffic than in other regions. In the North San Joaquin region, concern was more evenly spread among issues than elsewhere, and there was the least focus on water as a big issue. In the South San Joaquin region, crime was mentioned more often than in other regions; however, this region was second only to the North Valley in concern over water. Identification of issues also varied by ethnic group and length of residence. Latinos (24%) were less than half as likely as non-Hispanic whites (53%) to name the five growth-related issues mentioned above, much less frequently mentioning water (3% to 16%), growth (4% to 10%), and environment and pollution (5% to 12%). By contrast, Latinos were more likely than non-Hispanic whites to name crime (12% to 7%), jobs (9% to 4%), and schools (8% to 4%) as the top issues. Those who say they have lived in the Central Valley all of their lives are most likely to mention the environment and pollution (13%), water (11%), crime and gangs (9%), growth (8%), and loss of farmlands (7%) as the top problems facing the Central Valley, while one in four have no opinion. "What do you think is the most important public policy issue facing the Central Valley today?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San Joaquin Latino Water 13% 22% 11% 7% 15% 3% Environment, pollution10 7 14 8 9 5 Population growth and development 8 61410 4 4 Loss of farmlands, agriculture 8 4 9 9 8 6 Crime and gangs 8 6 7 71112 Traffic and transportation 6 3 9 6 5 6 Schools 6 4 7 7 4 8 Jobs and economy 5 4 2 6 7 9 Immigration, illegal immigration 2 0 0 1 4 1 Other* 812 612 812 Don't know26 32 21 27 25 34 * Includes several issues, each mentioned by one percent or fewer Central Valley residents. Central Valley Issues - 12 - Economic Conditions A solid majority (55%) say the Central Valley economy is in excellent or good shape today, one- third rate it as fair, and less than 10 percent say it is doing poorly. These ratings vary across the four regions, with three in four saying the economy is excellent or good in the Sacramento Metro area, and half giving positive ratings in the North San Joaquin and South San Joaquin areas, compared to only 37 percent in the North Valley. There are no differences between Latinos and non- Hispanic whites. In line with the positive assessments of the economy, most feel that the Central Valley is headed in the right direction rather than the wrong direction (63% to 29%) and that the quality of life in the Central Valley is going well rather than going badly (81% to 17%). These positive assessments are similar to evaluations of California as a whole in the PPIC Statewide Surveys. "In general, how would you rate the economy in the Central Valley?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Excellent 9% 3% 16% 8% 7% 11% Good46 34 56 42 42 42 Fair35 48 22 39 39 35 Poor 913 5111010 Don't know 1 2 1 0 2 2 Image Over half of the residents are so happy with the way things are going in the Central Valley that they agree with the statement, ÒThe Central Valley is the best place to live in California today.Ó Sacramento Metro residents are evenly divided on whether or not the Central Valley is superior to the rest of California, while those in the North Valley express the most positive sentiments. Latinos (67%) are much more likely than non-Hispanic whites (48%) to say that the Central Valley is the best place to live in California. Those who have lived in the Central Valley all of their lives (60%) are the most likely to say they are living in the best place in California, while those who have moved to the Central Valley in the last five years (38%) are the least likely to agree with this statement. "Do you agree or disagree with this statement: The Central Valley is the best place to live in California today." Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Agree 52% 59% 47% 52% 53% 67% Disagree45 37 50 44 45 31 Don't know 3 4 3 4 2 2 Central Valley Issues - 13 - Identity Although most residents give the Central Valley high marks as a place to live, they are more inclined to identify their city or community, rather than the Central Valley, as their home. If they were traveling in the Los Angeles or San Francisco areas and were asked where they lived, only one in five would identify himself or herself as a Central Valley resident. Two in three say they would name their city or community. People in the North San Joaquin (29%) and South San Joaquin (26%) areas were more likely than people in other regions to identify the Central Valley as their home. Latinos (27%) are more likely than non-Hispanic whites (20%) to say they are from the Central Valley, and non-Hispanic whites are more inclined than Latinos to identify with their city or community (68% to 58%). "If you were in the San Francisco Bay area or Los Angeles and someone asked you where you live, would you give the name of your city or community, or the county or region you live in, or would you say that you are from the Central Valley?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino City or community 66% 67% 73% 62% 62% 58% County or region11 15 12 7 10 12 Central valley21 15 12 29 26 27 Other, donÕt know 2 3 3 2 2 3 The Future While their assessments of todayÕs conditions are generally positive, residents are evenly divided when asked if the Central Valley will be a better place or a worse place in the future (37% to 33%). Only about one in four say it will stay the same. However, there is an interesting North/South divide, with residents of the North San Joaquin (39%) and South San Joaquin (43%) areas more likely than residents in the North Valley and Sacramento Metro areas to say things will be better. Latinos (55%) are much more likely than non-Hispanic whites (30%) to say the Central Valley will be a better place. Whether the future will be better or worse, most residents (66%) see themselves living in the Central Valley five years from now. There are no major differences across regions or racial and ethnic groups, but those who have lived in the Central Valley all of their lives are much more likely to say they will be staying (63%) than those who have lived in the Central Valley for less than five years (51%). "In the future, do you think that the Central Valley will be a better place to live than it is now, a worse place to live than it is now, or that there will be no change?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Better place 37% 30% 32% 39% 43% 55% Worse place33 34 41 36 25 14 No change26 34 23 21 29 26 Don't know 4 2 4 4 3 5 Central Valley Issues - 14 - Growth Perceptions Most residents see rapid growth as a major fact of life in the Central Valley in the recent past and the foreseeable future. Three in four say that the population of the Central Valley has been growing rapidly in recent years and a similar proportion expect the population to grow rapidly in the next 10 years. Although these perceptions and predictions are similar across all four regions, residents in the Sacramento Metro and North San Joaquin areas are the most likely to say that there has been rapid growth and that it will continue. Few in any region expect no growth or a population decline. "In the past few years, do you think the population of the Central Valley has been growing rapidly, growing slowly, staying about the same, or declining?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Growing rapidly 77% 66% 83% 82% 74% 75% Growing slowly14 21 10 13 17 16 Staying about the same 1 2 1 0 1 1 Declining 5 8 3 3 6 7 Don't know 3 3 3 2 2 1 "In the next 10 years, do you think that the population in the Central Valley region will grow rapidly, grow slowly, stay about the same, or decline?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Grow rapidly 74% 63% 80% 81% 70% 70% Grow slowly15 21 11 13 18 17 Stay about the same 1 2 1 1 1 2 Declining 8 14 6 4 9 9 Don't know 2 0 2 1 2 2 Policy Options Given the expectations for rapid growth, residents support a variety of policies for improving the future of the Central Valley. Residents were asked to rate eight policy prescriptions. Protecting agricultural lands (52%) and preserving wetlands (49%) were identified as "extremely effective" policies by the highest percentage of residents. These were followed in order by expanding public transit (46%), building a high-speed rail passenger system (43%), encouraging job centers near existing housing (41%), increasing freeways (37%), restricting development to existing urban and suburban areas (33%), and establishing growth boundaries (32%). Central Valley Issues - 15 - Support is strong across regions for protecting farmlands and preserving wetlands, but there are regional differences on other policies. For example, North Valley residents are less enthusiasticÑand Sacramento Metro and North San Joaquin residents more enthusiasticÑthan others about public transit proposals. Latinos look more favorably than non-Hispanic whites on encouraging job centers (53% to 37%), building high-speed rail (54% to 40%), and increasing freeways (50% to 33%). Central Valley and San Francisco Bay area residents show similar enthusiasm for protecting wetlands, increasing freeways, establishing growth boundaries, and restricting future development to urban and suburban areas, but Central Valley residents are less supportive of expanding public transit (46% to 61%), according to the Bay Area Council Poll. There are no comparisons available on protecting farmlands, encouraging job centers to develop near housing, or building a high-speed passenger train. "We'd like to ask you about ways to improve the quality of life in the Central Valley over the next 10 years. How effective do you think the following activities would be on a scale of 1 to 5, where 1 represents some- thing that would be 'not at all effective' and 5 represents something that would be 'extremely effective'?" % who rated an activity "extremely effective"Ñi.e., who gave an activity a 5 score Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San Joaquin Latino Protecting farms and agricultural lands from urban development 52% 50% 51% 54% 53% 53% Preserving wetlands, rivers, environmentally sensitive areas49 49 53 50 46 50 Expanding bus, light rail, public transit systems46 33 55 51 40 53 Building a high-speed passenger rail system from San Diego to San Francisco through the Central Valley43 27 43 49 46 54 Encouraging job centers to develop near existing housing41 37 44 44 39 53 Increasing freeway capacity37 30 40 39 35 50 Restricting development to existing suburban and urban areas33 28 33 34 33 30 Establishing growth boundaries for future development32 25 34 35 32 30 Central Valley Issues - 16 - Future Water Needs Central Valley residents overwhelmingly favor expanding the stateÕs system of reservoirs by capturing flood waters and storing them in off-stream reservoirs. This support is consistent with residentsÕ concerns about water and their perceptions of future growth. However, it could well be at odds with the very high priority they also place on protecting wetlands, rivers, and other environmentally sensitive areas. There is strong consensus across regions and racial and ethnic groups for expanding the stateÕs water system. A similar level of support was found in the Bay Area Council Poll. "Regarding ways to help the Central Valley meet its future water needs, do you favor or oppose expanding the state's system of reservoirs by capturing more flood waters and storing them in off-stream water storage areas?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Favor 81% 76% 78% 82% 84% 87% Oppose14 21 17 12 11 10 Don't know 5 3 5 6 5 3 New University of California Campus Most Central Valley residents (87%) believe that the new University of California campus at Merced is important to the future economy and quality of life in the Central Valley, and half believe it is "very important." North San Joaquin and South San Joaquin residents are the most likely to say the new U.C. Campus will be "very important." Latinos (75%) are very much more likely than non-Hispanic whites (46%) to rate it as "very important." Few residents in any region or racial or ethnic group think the new U.C. campus is not important to the Central Valley. "A new university campus will be built in the Central Valley. How important is the University of California at Merced to the future economy and quality of life in the Central Valley?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Very important 53% 46% 48% 61% 56% 75% Somewhat important34 37 38 29 34 20 Not important10 14 10 8 8 4 Don't know 3 3 4 2 2 1 - 17 - Political and Social Trends Civic and Religious Life How involved are Central Valley residents in activities other than work and home life? Many said they were involved in religious activities (58%), volunteer work (57%), or local and neighborhood issues (49%). In contrast, only 24 percent are involved in political activities. However, the proportion of those who are "very" involved is much lower: 25 percent in religious activity, 19 percent in volunteer work, 8 percent in neighborhood activities, and 3 percent in political activities. Compared to all Californians (in the PPIC Statewide Survey), Central Valley residents are a little more likely to be engaged in politics (24% to 17%) and local issues (49% to 41%) but not volunteer work (57% to 61%). There are no statewide comparisons available on religious activities. Some regional and ethnic differences are observable. For example, Sacramento Metro residents are less likely to say they are very involved in religious activities. Latinos are more likely than non- Hispanic whites to be involved in religious activities (65% to 56%) and less likely to be involved in volunteer work (48% to 60%). Those who have lived in the Central Valley all of their lives are more likely than newcomers (i.e., resident less than five years) to be involved in religious activities (58% to 46%). "Are you very involved, somewhat involved, or not involved in ..." Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Religious or spiritual activities Very involved 25% 25% 20% 29% 27% 20% Somewhat involved33 31 32 34 35 45 Not involved42 44 48 37 38 35 Volunteer or charity work Very involved 19% 16% 21% 20% 19% 14% Somewhat involved38 42 40 35 37 34 Not involved43 42 39 45 44 52 Local and neighborhood issues Very involved 8% 7% 8% 7% 8% 6% Somewhat involved41 41 42 43 40 40 Not involved51 52 50 50 52 54 Political activities Very involved 3% 3% 3% 2% 3% 2% Somewhat involved21 18 23 21 19 17 Not involved76 79 74 77 78 81 Political and Social Trends - 18 - Political Profile Where are Central Valley residents on the political spectrum? Compared to all Californians (in the PPIC Statewide Survey), Central Valley residents are a little more likely to identify themselves as conservative (41% to 35%). However, relatively few Central Valley residents consider themselves to be ÒveryÓ conservative. In fact, the largest group, 58 percent, is composed of those who say they are middle-of the-road to somewhat conservative in their politics. There are regional and ethnic differences across regions. Sacramento Metro residents (34%) are the least likely to describe themselves as at all conservative, while North Valley residents are the least likely to describe themselves as at all liberal (18%). Latinos are just as likely as non-Hispanic whites to describe themselves as conservatives (40% to 42%). "Would you consider yourself to be politically very liberal, somewhat liberal, middle-of-the-road, somewhat conservative, or very conservative?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Very liberal 7% 4% 7% 7% 8% 9% Somewhat liberal19 14 24 17 17 22 Middle-of-the-road30 35 34 29 27 24 Somewhat conservative28 32 25 27 31 28 Very conservative13 13 9 16 15 12 DonÕt Know 3 2 1 4 2 5 Sources of Political Information Central Valley residents are like most Californians (in the most recent PPIC Statewide Survey) in saying that they get most of their political news from television rather than from newspapers. Sacramento Metro residents are evenly divided between television and newspapers as the major source of their political information, while television dominates in the other regions. The reliance on television over newspapers is greater among Latinos (63% to 19%) than among non-Hispanic whites (41% to 31%). The only education and income groups that rely on newspapers more than on television are college graduates (39% to 29%) and households with annual incomes of $80,000 or more (38% to 26%). Political and Social Trends - 19 - "Do you get most of your information on what's going on in politics today from newspapers, television, radio, magazines, talking to people, or the internet?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Television 46% 55% 37% 51% 48% 63% Newspapers29 22 35 26 27 19 Radio10 10 12 8 9 6 Talking to people 8 8 8 7 9 8 Internet 4 2 5 4 5 3 Magazines 2 2 2 3 2 1 Other 1 1 1 1 0 0 Computers and the Internet Most Central Valley residents have had at least some experience with computers and the internet. Seven in 10 say they have used a computer at home, work, or school; 54 percent have gone on line to access the Internet or e-mail; and 55 percent have a personal computer at home. These numbers are slightly below the California averages in the most recent PPIC Statewide Survey. Many Central Valley residents consider themselves frequent users of computers. Nearly half say they often use a computer at home, work, or school, while 37 percent say they often use a computer to access e-mail or the Internet, and 35 percent say they often use a personal computer at home. Across regions, Sacramento Metro residents show the highest rates of computer use, computer ownership, and internet/e-mail use, with rates that are at least on a par with California averages. By contrast, North Valley residents are the least likely to have ever used computers, to have ever used e-mail or the internet, and to have computers in their homes. There is strong evidence of a Òdigital divideÓ in the Central Valley. Latinos lag behind non- Hispanic whites in frequent use of computers at home, work, or school (34% to 53%), frequent use of the internet or e-mail (21% to 40%), and frequent use of a personal computer at home (18% to 40%). Most Latinos have not accessed the internet or e-mail (62%) and do not have a computer in their home (65%). College graduates are more likely than those with a high school education or less to often use a computer (73% to 25%), to often use the internet or e-mail (58% to 17%), and to often use a computer at home (54% to 17%). Across income groups, 61 percent of households with annual incomes under $40,000 do not have a home computer, while 84 percent of households with incomes of $80,000 or more do. Political and Social Trends - 20 - "Do you yourself ever use a computer at home, at work, or at school?" (if yes: Do you use a computer often or only sometimes?") Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Yes, often 49% 41% 57% 50% 44% 34% Yes, sometimes21 20 21 18 22 26 No30 39 22 32 34 40 "Do you ever go on-line to access the internet or world wide web or to send or receive e-mail?" (if yes: Do you do this often or only sometimes?") Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Yes, often 37% 29% 47% 35% 31% 21% Yes, sometimes17 18 18 17 17 17 No16 14 13 16 18 22 DonÕt use computers30 39 22 32 34 40 "Do you have any type of personal computer, including laptops in your home? These do not include game machines such as Nintendo or Sega. ( if yes: Do you use your home computer often or only sometimes?") Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Yes, often 35% 28% 41% 32% 34% 18% Yes, sometimes20 22 21 20 17 17 No45 50 38 48 49 65 - 21 - Survey Methodology The Central Valley Survey is a special edition of the PPIC Statewide Survey, which is directed by Mark Baldassare, senior fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California, with research assistance from Jonathan Cohen and Christopher Hoene. The survey was conducted in collaboration with the Great Valley Center; however, the survey methodology and questions and the content of this report were solely determined by Mark Baldassare. The survey benefited from consultation with Hans Johnson and Michael Teitz at PPIC and Carol Whiteside at the Great Valley Center. The findings of the survey are based on telephone interviews with 2,016 adult residents in the 18-county Central Valley region, interviewed from October 18 to October 24, 1999. 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 the Central Valley were eligible for calling. Telephone numbers in the survey sample were called up to four 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 using the Òlast birthday methodÓ to avoid biases in age and gender. Each interview took an average of 20 minutes to complete. Interviewing was conducted in English or Spanish, as needed. We used recent U.S. Census and state figures to compare the demographic characteristics of the survey sample with characteristics of the Central ValleyÕs adult population. The survey sample was closely comparable to U.S. 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 2,016 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 adults in the Central Valley 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 this report, we refer to four geographic regions in the Central Valley. ÒNorth ValleyÓ includes Butte, Colusa, Glenn, Shasta, Sutter, Tehama, and Yuba counties (12 percent of the Central ValleyÕs adult population). ÒSacramento MetroÓ includes Placer, Sacramento, and Yolo counties (30 percent of the population). ÒNorth San JoaquinÓ includes Merced, San Joaquin, and Stanislaus counties (22 percent of the population). ÒSouth San JoaquinÓ includes Fresno, Kern, Kings, Madera, and Tulare counties (36 percent of the population). We contrast the results for Latinos with results for non-Hispanic whites. Latinos account for about 22 percent of the Central Valley's adult population and constitute one of the fastest growing groups in this region. The sample sizes for the African American and Asian subgroups are not large enough for separate statistical analysis. In some cases, the Central Valley Survey uses questions and the results of responses recorded in the PPIC Statewide Surveys conducted in 1998 and 1999, the Orange County Annual Surveys conducted by Mark Baldassare and Cheryl Katz for U.C. Irvine since 1982, the Bay Area Poll conducted by the Bay Area Council in 1998, and national surveys conducted by the Pew Research Center in 1998 and 1999 and by the University of Virginia for the American Association of Retired Persons in 1996. 23 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY: SPECIAL SURVEY OF THE CENTRAL VALLEY OCTOBER 18 Ð 24, 1999 2,016 CENTRAL VALLEY ADULT RESIDENTS; ENGLISH AND SPANISH MARGIN OF ERROR +/- 2% AT 95% CONFIDENCE LEVEL FOR TOTAL SAMPLE I would like to begin by asking you some questions about you, your community, and the region you live in. 1. Which of the following best describes the place where you now liveÑa large city, a suburb, a small city or town, or a rural area? 21% large city 12 suburb 48 small city or town 18 rural area 1 other 2. Did you grow up in the community where you now live? 32% yes 68 no 3. Overall, how would you rate your community as a place to live? Would you say it is excellent, good, fair, or poor? 26% excellent 47 good 21 fair 6 poor Now, IÕd like to ask you how you would rate some of the public services you receive in your local area. (rotate questions 4 to 8) 4. Police protection. Would you say this is excellent, good, fair, or poor? 21% excellent 48 good 22 fair 7 poor 2 don't know 5. Parks and other public recreational facilities. Would you say they are excellent, good, fair, or poor? 23% excellent 45 good 22 fair 8 poor 2 don't know 6. Local freeways, streets, and roads. Would you say they are excellent, good, fair, or poor? 12% excellent 46 good 32 fair 10 poor 0 don't know 7. Local public schools. Would you say they are excellent, good, fair, or poor? 16% excellent 43 good 23 fair 9 poor 9 don't know8. Local public libraries. Would you say they are excellent, good, fair, or poor? 15% excellent 45 good 21 fair 8 poor 11 don't know 9. How would you rate the performance of your city government in solving problems in your city or communityÑexcellent, good, fair or poor? 5% excellent 34 good 38 fair 15 poor 4 don't live in a city 4 don't know 10. How would you rate the performance of county government in solving problems in your countyÑ excellent, good, fair, or poor? 3% excellent 38 good 42 fair 13 poor 4 don't know Next, a few questions about the region you live in. 11. How much of a problem is traffic congestion in your regionÑis it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem? 23% big problem 36 somewhat of a problem 41 not a problem 12. How much of a problem are population growth and urban development in your regionÑare they a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem? 21% big problem 35 somewhat of a problem 43 not a problem 1 donÕt know 13. Aside from the impact of the recent forest fires and the tire fires, how much of a problem is air pollution in your regionÑa big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem? 28% big problem 41 somewhat of a problem 30 not a problem 1 donÕt know - 24 - 14. How much of a problem are crime and gangs in your regionÑare they a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem? 18% big problem 52 somewhat of a problem 29 not a problem 1 donÕt know 15. How much of a problem are racial and ethnic tensions in your regionÑare they a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem? 8% big problem 41 somewhat of a problem 49 not a problem 2 donÕt know 16. How much of a problem is the loss of farms and agricultural land in your regionÑis it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem? 23% big problem 28 somewhat of a problem 41 not a problem 8 donÕt know 17. How do you feel about the job opportunities that are available in your regionÑare you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, or not satisfied? 23% very satisfied 41 somewhat satisfied 31 not satisfied 5 donÕt know 18. How do you feel about the availability of housing that you can afford in your regionÑare you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, or not satisfied? 37% very satisfied 43 somewhat satisfied 18 not satisfied 2 donÕt know 19. How do you feel about the availability of public colleges and universities in your regionÑare you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, or not satisfied? 48% very satisfied 38 somewhat satisfied 10 not satisfied 4 donÕt know 20. How do you feel about the availability of outdoor leisure activities in your regionÑare you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, or not satisfied? 43% very satisfied 39 somewhat satisfied 16 not satisfied 2 donÕt knowNext, we are interested in your opinions about the broader geographic region you live inÑthe Central ValleyÑwhich is the inland area of California stretching from Bakersfield to Redding. 21. What do you think is the most important public policy issue facing the Central Valley today? (code, donÕt read) 13% water 10 environment, pollution 8 growth, overpopulation 8 crime, gangs 8 loss of farmlands, agriculture 6 traffic and transportation 6 schools, education 5 jobs, the economy 2 immigration, illegal immigration 1 housing costs, housing availability 1 sprawl 1 poverty, the poor, the homeless, welfare 1 drugs 1 lack of values, morals, religion 1 natural disasters 2 other (specify) 26 don't know 22. And do you think that things in the Central Valley are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction? 63% right direction 29 wrong direction 8 don't know 23. In general, how would you rate the economy in the Central ValleyÑis it excellent, good, fair, or poor? 9% excellent 46 good 35 fair 9 poor 1 don't know 24. Thinking about the quality of life in the Central Valley, how do you think things are goingÑvery well, somewhat well, somewhat badly, or very badly? 17% very well 64 somewhat well 15 somewhat badly 2 very badly 2 don't know 25. Do you agree or disagree with this statement: The Central Valley is the best place to live in California today? 52% agree 45 disagree 3 don't know 26. And in the future, do you think that the Central Valley will be a better place to live than it is now, a worse place to live than it is now, or that there will be no change? 37% better place 33 worse place 26 no change 4 don't know - 25 - 27. Five years from now, do you see yourself living in the Central Valley or living somewhere else? (if elsewhere: Is that inside or outside of California?) 66% yes, living in the Central Valley 15 no, elsewhere in California 15 no, elsewhere outside of California 4 don't know 28. If you were in the San Francisco Bay area or Los Angeles and someone asked you where you live, would you give the name of your city or community, or the county or region you live in, or would you say that you are from the Central Valley? 66% city or community 11 county or region 21 Central Valley 2 other, donÕt know 29. In the past few years, do you think the population of the Central Valley has been growing rapidly, growing slowly, staying about the same, or declining? 77% growing rapidly 14 growing slowly 1 staying about the same 5 declining 3 don't know 30. And in the next 10 years, do you think that the population in the Central Valley region will grow rapidly, grow slowly, stay about the same, or decline? 74% grow rapidly 15 grow slowly 1 stay about the same 8 decline 2 don't know Now, IÕd like to ask you about ways to improve the quality of life in the Central Valley over the next 10 years. How effective do you think the following activities would be on a scale of 1 to 5, where 1 represents something that would be Ònot at all effectiveÓ and 5 represents something that would be "extremely effective"? (rotate questions 31-38) 31. Restricting future development to existing suburban and urban areas rather than expanding into rural areasÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 7% (1) not at all effective 9 (2) 29 (3) 19 (4) 33 (5) extremely effective 3 don't know 32. Increasing freeway capacityÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 8% (1) not at all effective 10 (2) 23 (3) 21 (4) 37 (5) extremely effective 1 don't know33. Establishing growth boundaries within which future development would be confinedÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 7% (1) not at all effective 8 (2) 27 (3) 23 (4) 32 (5) extremely effective 3 don't know 34. Preserving wetlands, rivers, and other environmentally sensitive areasÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 6% (1) not at all effective 7 (2) 17 (3) 19 (4) 49 (5) extremely effective 2 don't know 35. Encouraging job centers to develop near existing housing to reduce commute times for workersÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 6% (1) not at all effective 8 (2) 21 (3) 22 (4) 41 (5) extremely effective 2 don't know 36. Expanding bus, light rail, and train public transit systemsÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 6% (1) not at all effective 9 (2) 17 (3) 21 (4) 46 (5) extremely effective 1 don't know 37. Building a high-speed passenger rail system to run from San Diego to San Francisco through the Central ValleyÕs major citiesÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 12% (1) not at all effective 8 (2) 18 (3) 17 (4) 43 (5) extremely effective 2 don't know 38. Protecting farms and agricultural lands from urban developmentÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 5% (1) not at all effective 4 (2) 17 (3) 20 (4) 52 (5) extremely effective 2 don't know - 26 - 39. Regarding ways to help the Central Valley meet its future water needs, do you favor or oppose expanding the stateÕs system of reservoirs by capturing more flood waters and storing them in off-stream water storage areas? 81% favor 14 oppose 5 don't know 40. A new university campus will be built in the Central Valley. How important is the University of California at Merced to the future economy and quality of life in the Central ValleyÑvery important, somewhat important, or not important? 53% very important 34 somewhat important 10 not important 3 don't know 41. On another topic, some people are registered to vote and others are not. Are you absolutely certain you are registered to vote? (if yes: Are you registered as a Democrat, a Republican, another party, or independent?) 32% yes, Democrat 30 yes, Republican 4 yes, other party 11 yes, independent 23 no, not registered 42. Would you consider yourself to be politically very liberal, somewhat liberal, middle-of-the-road, somewhat conservative, or very conservative? 7% very liberal 19 somewhat liberal 30 middle-of-the-road 28 somewhat conservative 13 very conservative 3 donÕt know 43. Would you say that you follow whatÕs going on in government and public affairs most of the time, some of the time, only now and then, hardly ever, or never? 43% most of the time 35 some of the time 15 only now and then 6 hardly ever 1 never 44. And do you get most of your information on whatÕs going on in politics today from newspapers, television, radio, magazines, talking to people, or the internet? 29% newspapers 46 television 10 radio 2 magazines 8 talking to people 5 internet 0 otherOn another topic, we are interested in learning about how people are spending their time these days. I am going to read to you a list of activities that people get involved in. For each one I'd like you to tell me whether you feel that you are very involved, somewhat involved, or not really involved in that activity these days. (if necessary: By involvement we mean how much time you spend on something, compared to other people.) (rotate questions 45 to 48) 45. Religious or spiritual activities, including time spent with religious organizations? Are you very involved, somewhat involved, or not involved? 25% very involved 33 somewhat involved 42 not involved 46. Political activities related to political parties, candidates, and election campaigns? Are you very involved, somewhat involved, or not involved? 3% very involved 21 somewhat involved 76 not involved 47. Working on local issues and neighborhood problems? Are you very involved, somewhat involved, or not involved? 8% very involved 41 somewhat involved 51 not involved 48. Volunteer or charity work for which you are not paid? Are you very involved, somewhat involved, or not involved? 19% very involved 38 somewhat involved 43 not involved 49. On another topic, do you yourself ever use a computer at home, at work, or at school? (if yes: Do you use a computer often or only sometimes?) 49% yes, often (ask q. 50) 21 yes, sometimes (ask q. 50) 30 no (skip to q.51) 50. Do you ever go on-line to access the internet or world wide web or to send or receive e-mail? (if yes: Do you do this often or only sometimes?) 37% yes, often 17 yes, sometimes 46 no 51. Do you have any type of personal computer, including laptops, in your home? These do not include game machines such as Nintendo or Sega. (if yes: Do you use your home computer often or only sometimes?) 35% yes, often 20 yes, sometimes 45 no - 27 - [Questions 52-63 are demographic questions. Three are of more general interest and are included below.] 54. How long have you lived in the Central Valley region? 44% less than five years 19 five years to less than 10 years 20 10 years to 20 years 17 more than 20 years 58. Do you commute to work in the California coastal metropolitan regions? (if yes: Is that in Los Angeles or the San Francisco Bay area?) 3% yes, Los Angeles 9 yes, San Francisco Bay area 88 no 59. On a typical day, how much of a problem is traffic congestion when you travel to and from work? Would you say it is no problem at all, somewhat of a problem, or a great problem? 53% no problem at all 32 somewhat of a problem 15 a great problem - 28 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Advisory Committee Ruben Barrales President Joint Venture Ð Silicon Valley Network Angela Blackwell President PolicyLink Nick Bollman Senior Program Director The James Irvine Foundation Mollyann Brodie Vice President Kaiser Family Foundation Matt Fong Attorney Sheppard Mullin William Hauck President California Business Roundtable Sherry Bebitch Jeffe Senior Associate Claremont Graduate University Monica Lozano Associate Publisher and Executive Editor La Opini—n Jerry Lubenow Director of Publications Institute of Governmental Studies University of California, Berkeley Donna Lucas President Nelson CommunicationsMax Neiman Director Center for Social and Behavioral Research University of California, Riverside Jerry Roberts Managing Editor San Francisco Chronicle Dan Rosenheim News Director KRON-TV Richard T. Schlosberg, III President and CEO The Packard Foundation Carol Stogsdill Senior Vice President APCO Associates Cathy Taylor Editorial Page Editor Orange County Register Steven Toben Program Officer The Hewlett Foundation Raymond L. Watson Vice Chairman of the Board The Irvine Company Carol Whiteside President Great Valley Center" } ["___content":protected]=> string(104) "

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" ["_permalink":protected]=> string(116) "https://www.ppic.org/publication/ppic-statewide-survey-special-survey-of-the-central-valley-november-1999/s_1199mbs/" ["_next":protected]=> array(0) { } ["_prev":protected]=> array(0) { } ["_css_class":protected]=> NULL ["id"]=> int(8071) ["ID"]=> int(8071) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "1" ["post_content"]=> string(0) "" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 02:34:39" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(3151) ["post_status"]=> string(7) "inherit" ["post_title"]=> string(9) "S 1199MBS" ["post_type"]=> string(10) "attachment" ["slug"]=> string(9) "s_1199mbs" ["__type":protected]=> NULL ["_wp_attached_file"]=> string(13) "S_1199MBS.pdf" ["wpmf_size"]=> string(6) "314522" ["wpmf_filetype"]=> string(3) "pdf" ["wpmf_order"]=> string(1) "0" ["searchwp_content"]=> string(69123) "The Public Policy Institute of California is an independent, nonpartisan research organization established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. The Institute is dedicated to raising public awareness of issues and giving elected representatives and other public officials in California a more informed basis for developing policies and programs. 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 - i -PrefaceThe Central Valley Survey — a collaborative effort of the Public Policy Institute of California and the GreatValley Center — is a special edition of the PPIC Statewide Survey. This survey was co-sponsored by the GreatValley Center with support from KVIE-TV in Sacramento.The purpose of the survey is to provide the first comprehensive, advocacy-free study of the attitudes and publicpolicy preferences of Central Valley residents. The Central Valley has been a subject of great interest to researchersand state and national leaders for some time because of its increasing role in the social, economic, and political lifeof California.The Central Valley — the inland area of California stretching 400 miles from Bakersfield to Redding — ishome to 5 million residents and is one of the fastest growing areas of the state. Latinos now account for one-fourthof the Central Valley population, and growth in the Latino population is expected to accelerate over the next fewdecades. Because the region is the agricultural center of the state — and because agriculture is the state’s leadingindustry — the urbanization of farmland in the Central Valley is of great concern to policymakers. Since neither ofthe major political parties has a large voter registration advantage in this region, the Central Valley is considered oneof the most critical "swing regions" in the state, consisting of independent-minded voters who can have atremendous effect on statewide elections.This survey of 2,016 adult residents provides “benchmark” questions for measuring changes in key indicatorsover time and includes comparisons with other major regions of California and with the state as a whole. Weexplored the following issues:· Variations in the social, economic, and political attitudes and policy preferences across four different regions ofthe Central Valley (i.e., North Valley, Sacramento Metro, North San Joaquin, and South San Joaquin), betweenLatinos and non-Hispanic whites, between newcomers and life-long residents, and across the socioeconomicspectrum.· Local ratings, including evaluations of the community, local public services, and city and county government.· Regional perceptions, including appraisals of regional problems, satisfaction with key amenities andopportunities, and observations on traffic congestion.· Central Valley issues, including thoughts about specific problems, the regional economy, living in the CentralValley, population growth, water, and policies for improving quality of life in the Central Valley.· Political and social trends, including civic and religious involvement, political profile, sources of politicalinformation, and use of computers and the internet.Copies of this report may be ordered by calling (800) 232-5343 [mainland U.S.] or (415) 291-4415 [Canada,Hawaii, overseas]. - ii - - iii - Contents Preface i Press Release v Local Ratings 1 Regional Perceptions 5 Central Valley Issues 11 Political and Social Trends 17 Survey Methodology 21 Survey Questions and Results 23 Survey Advisory Committee 28 - v- Press Release CENTRAL VALLEY RESIDENTS EXPRESS SATISFACTION WITH THEIR COMMUNITIES AND QUALITY OF LIFE, AMBIVALENCE ABOUT THE FUTURE Growth-Related Issues Create Uncertainty, Conflict SAN FRANCISCO, California, November 18, 1999 Ñ In contrast to the perceptions of many outsiders, residents of the Central Valley are content with life in the stateÕs heartland, with over half believing that the region is the best place to live in California today. However, a new survey just released by the Public Policy Institute of California and the Great Valley Center also reveals profound uncertainty about the future of the region, driven largely by conflicting views about the costs and benefits of growth. The large-scale public opinion survey of the 18-county Central Valley region found that three in four residents rate their community as an excellent or good place to live. Fifty-five percent rate the economy in the region excellent (9%) or good (46%). Most residents are ÒveryÓ or ÒsomewhatÓ satisfied with the availability of public colleges and universities (48% and 38%), outdoor leisure activities (43% and 39%), and affordable housing (37% and 43%). Solid majorities say the quality of local public services they receive is excellent or good, including police protection (69%), parks and other recreational facilities (68%), public libraries (60%), public schools (59%), and local freeways, streets, and roads (58%). ÒInterestingly, many quality of life measures in the Central Valley today are as good or better than those in coastal urban regions of the state,Ó said PPIC Statewide Survey Director Mark Baldassare. ÒThe one big exception is that people in the Central Valley are not as satisfied as residents in Los Angeles or the San Francisco Bay Area with job opportunities in their region.Ó Growth, Associated Issues Are Key Concerns Although they are feeling good right now, Central Valley residents admit to having qualms about tomorrow. They are evenly divided when asked if the Central Valley will be a better place or a worse place in the future (37% to 33%), with only about one in four residents saying it will stay the same. Much of the uncertainty about what the future holds for the Central Valley appears to stem from a common perception the region is growing at a tremendous rate. Seventy-seven percent believe that the population of the region has been growing rapidly in recent years, and 74 percent think that the population will continue to increase rapidly in the next decade. When residents were asked to name the most important public policy issue facing the Central Valley today, a group of five growth-related issues took precedence. Nearly half of those surveyed said that water (13%), the environment and pollution (10%), population growth and development (8%), loss of farmlands and agriculture (8%), and traffic and transportation (6%) are the biggest problems. Given the expectations and concerns about rapid growth, residents support a variety of policies Ñ some of them contradictory Ñ for improving the regionÕs quality of life over the next 10 years. When residents rated eight policy options, protecting agricultural lands (52%) and preserving wetlands (49%) were identified as Òextremely effectiveÓ policies by half of those surveyed. However, only one- third said that restricting development to existing suburban and urban areas would be Òextremely effective.Ó Eighty- Press Release - vi- one percent also said they would support expanding the stateÕs reservoir system to help the Valley meet future water needs. ÒThere is a real challenge here for local leaders,Ó said Carol Whiteside, President of the Great Valley Center. ÒAt the same time residents express support for policy prescriptions that would protect the natural environment and preserve farmlands, they want more water storage systems and are lukewarm about limiting development. Some tough choices lie ahead for Central Valley communities.Ó Region Defies Labels, Lacks Common Vision While many observers view the Central Valley as a bastion of conservative politics, in reality the region is less easy to label. Compared to all Californians, Central Valley residents are a little more likely to identify themselves as conservative (35% to 41%). However, relatively few Valley residents consider themselves to be ÒveryÓ conservative (13%). The majority (58%) identify themselves as middle-of-the-road to somewhat conservative in their politics. There are also significant regional differences within the Central Valley on many key issues, most notably among residents of the North Valley and people who live in the Sacramento Metro area. For example, North Valley residents are less likely to describe themselves as liberal, while fewer Sacramento Metro residents say they are conservative. North Valley residents are less likely to rate the economy as excellent or good (37%), while Sacramento Metro residents are the most positive (74%). Paradoxically, North Valley residents are also the most likely (59%), and Sacramento Metro residents the least likely (47%), to agree with the statement, ÒThe Central Valley is the best place to live in California today.Ó The views of Latinos Ñ who represent a large and growing segment of the ValleyÕs population Ñ also differ sharply from non-Hispanic whites in a number of key areas. Latinos (24%) were less than half as likely as non- Hispanic whites (53%) to name a growth-related problem as the most important policy issue facing the region. By contrast, Latinos were more likely than non-Hispanic whites to name crime and gangs (12% to 7%), jobs (9% to 4%), and schools (8% to 4%) as the top issues. While most Central Valley residents believe that the new University of California campus at Merced is important to the future economy and quality of life in the region, Latinos are far more likely (75%) than non-Hispanic whites (46%) to rate it as Òvery important.Ó Although they give the Central Valley high marks as a place to live, most residents do not appear to identify strongly with the region as a whole. If they were traveling outside the area and were asked where they lived, only one in five would say they were from the Central Valley, while two in three would name their city or community. People in the southern areas of the Central Valley were more likely than people in other regions to identify the Central Valley as their home. ÒThis survey points to the incredible geographic and social diversity of the area we call the Central Valley,Ó said Baldassare. ÒWhile it is difficult to identify a common regional vision, there are many common challenges that could have profound effects on the state as a whole. State policymakers need to pay close attention to what is happening here Ñ the region is poised to play an increasingly vital role in CaliforniaÕs social, political, and economic way of life.Ó About the Survey The Central Valley Survey Ñ a collaborative effort of the Public Policy Institute of California and the Great Valley Center Ñ is a special edition of the PPIC Statewide Survey. The purpose of this survey is to provide the first comprehensive, advocacy-free study of the political, social, and economic attitudes and public policy preferences of Central Valley residents. Press Release - vii- Findings are based on a telephone survey of 2,016 California adult residents in the 18-county Central Valley region, interviewed from October 18 to October 24, 1999. Interviews were conducted in English or Spanish. The sampling error for the total sample is +/- 2%. For additional information on survey methodology, see page 21. Dr. Mark Baldassare is a senior fellow at PPIC. He is founder and director of the Orange County Annual Survey which he has conducted at UC Irvine since 1982. For over two decades, he has conducted surveys for major news organizations, including the Orange County Edition of the Los Angeles Times, the Orange County Register, the San Francisco Chronicle, KCAL-TV, and KRON-TV. Dr. Baldassare is the author of a forthcoming book on the changing social and political landscape of California (expected in April 2000). PPIC is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to objective, nonpartisan research on economic, social, and political issues that affect the lives of Californians. The Institute was established in 1994 with an endowment from William R. Hewlett. This report will appear on PPICÕs Web site (www.ppic.org) on November 18, 1999. ### - 1 - Local Ratings Community Perceptions For most Central Valley residents, life is a small town or rural experience. Although most Sacramento Metro residents describe themselves as living in a large city or suburb (61%), two in three residents in the other three regions say they live in small cities or towns or rural areas. Latinos are a little more likely than non-Hispanic whites (71% to 65%) to say they live in a small city or town or rural area and less likely to say they live in a suburb (7% to 14%). Central Valley residents are overwhelmingly content with their communities. Three in four rate their community as excellent (26%) or good (47%), one in five say it is fair, and only 6 percent say it is poor. Although people in all regions give their communities mostly positive ratings, Sacramento Metro residents are the most likely (31%) to say their community is excellent. Latinos (19%) are less likely than non-Hispanic whites (28%) to give the place where they live an excellent rating, but most in each group give positive evaluations. Lifelong residents of the Central Valley and those who have moved there in the past five years give equally positive ratings of their communities. "Which of the following best describes the place where you now live?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Large city 21% 3% 34% 14% 21% 22% Suburb12 5 27 6 6 7 Small city or town48 58 27 63 52 59 Rural area, other*19 34 12 17 21 12 *1 percent gave other responses. "Overall, how would you rate your community as a place to live?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Excellent 26% 26% 31% 24% 22% 19% Good47 48 49 46 46 45 Fair21 22 17 22 25 26 Poor 6 4 3 8 7 10 Local Ratings - 2 - Local Public Services The ratings that Central Valley residents give local public services are consistent with the favorable ratings they give their communities. More than two-thirds say their local police protection and parks and other recreational facilities are excellent or good. Six in 10 are similarly positive about their local public libraries, their public schools, and local freeways, streets, and roads. Across all regions, residents are more likely to rate services as good than as excellent. For example, fewer than one in four give excellent ratings to their parks and recreation facilities (23%) and police (21%), and about one in six give excellent ratings to public schools (16%). Nevertheless, the generally favorable reaction is borne out by the low percentage who give ÒpoorÓ ratings to any of the local public services, including police (7%), parks and recreation (8%), public libraries (8%), public schools (9%), and local roads (10%). Compared with ratings in California as a whole (in the PPIC Statewide Survey), the excellent or good ratings that Central Valley residents give to local police and parks are on a par with California averages. Ratings of local roads and public schools are even better than for California as a whole. There are no comparable statewide figures on ratings of local public libraries. Ratings of local public services do vary across regions. In the Sacramento Metro region, local parks receive more excellent or good ratings (76%) and local public schools get less positive ratings (54%) than elsewhere. The North Valley gives local public libraries (48%) and local police (62%) lower ratings but local roads more positive evaluations than other regions do. Looking at evaluations across different demographic groups, the survey found that Latinos and non-Hispanic whites rate local public services similarly. People who have lived in the Central Valley for less than five years are less likely than longer-term residents to give good or excellent ratings to public schools (51% to 62%) and public libraries (51% to 64%). There are more excellent and good ratings of police protection from residents in households earning $80,000 or more (79%) than from those having incomes under $40,000 (65%). Local Ratings - 3 - "How would you rate some of the public services you receive in your local area?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Police protection Excellent 21% 17% 22% 19% 22% 23% Good48 45 49 47 49 46 Fair22 26 20 22 21 23 Poor 7 9 6 9 6 7 Don't know 2 3 3 3 2 1 Parks and other public recreational facilities Excellent 23% 21% 30% 23% 18% 23% Good45 48 46 43 43 43 Fair22 22 18 24 25 23 Poor 8 7 5 71210 Don't know 2 2 1 3 2 1 Local public libraries Excellent 15% 8% 14% 17% 18% 16% Good45 40 46 42 47 49 Fair21 22 23 20 21 18 Poor 817 710 6 8 Don't know11 13 10 11 8 9 Local public schools Excellent 16% 15% 16% 13% 20% 18% Good43 51 38 45 43 41 Fair23 24 24 23 21 25 Poor 9 610 9 810 Don't know 9 41210 8 6 Local freeways, streets, and roads Excellent 12% 12% 10% 11% 13% 17% Good46 52 48 46 42 41 Fair32 23 32 33 34 30 Poor10 13 9 10 11 12 Don't know 0 0 1 0 0 0 Local Ratings - 4 - Local Government The good feelings Central Valley residents have about their communities and local public services aren't reflected in their opinions about their local governments. Only four in 10 say their city government is doing an excellent (5%) or good (34%) job of solving city or community problems. A similar four in 10 rate it as fair, and one in six say its performance is poor. Across regions, Sacramento Metro residents are the least likely (11%) to give government poor ratings. Across ethnic groups, Latinos are more likely (50%) than non-Hispanic whites (36%) to give their city governments either excellent or good grades. Ratings for county government are fairly similar, with four in 10 people saying that their county government is doing an excellent (3%) or good (38%) job in solving county problems. Four in 10 rate their county government as fair, and one in eight say it is doing a poor job. There are no major differences across regions. Once again, Latinos (49%) are more likely than non-Hispanic whites (37%) to give their county governments good or higher ratings. There are no comparable statewide figures for the ratings of local government, since these questions have yet to be asked in the PPIC Statewide Survey. However, in the 1999 Orange County Annual Survey, Orange County residents were more likely than Central Valley residents to give their city government excellent or good ratings (50%) but rated their county government about the same, with 40 percent considering it excellent or good. "How would you rate the performance of your city government in solving problems in your city or community?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Excellent5% 4% 5% 6% 6% 8% Good34 32 37 33 32 42 Fair38 39 39 35 39 33 Poor15 18 11 17 16 13 Don't know, don't live in a city 8 7 8 9 7 4 "How would you rate the performance of county government in solving problems in your county?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Excellent3% 4% 3% 4% 4% 7% Good38 33 39 37 38 42 Fair42 44 41 41 41 39 Poor13 16 12 11 13 9 DonÕt know 4 3 5 7 4 3 - 5 - Regional Perceptions Regional Problems Although they are highly satisfied with their local communities, Central Valley residents readily admit to having problems in their regions. When asked how much of a problem certain things are in their region, residents rated the following as "big" or "some" problem: crime and gangs (70%), air pollution (69%), traffic congestion (59%), growth and development (56%), and the loss of agriculture and farmlands (51%). However, the perception of severity changes somewhat if we consider the percentage of residents that see an issue as a "big" problem: About one-in-four rate air pollution (28%), traffic congestion (23%), the loss of farmlands and agriculture (23%), and growth and development (21%) as "big problems." Fewer say that crime and gangs (18%) and racial and ethnic tensions (8%) are big problems in their regions. In comparison with results of the PPIC Statewide Survey, traffic congestion and growth and development are rated as less serious problems in the Central Valley than in the Los Angeles region or San Francisco Bay area. There are no state comparisons available on perceptions of crime and gangs, air pollution, racial and ethnic tensions, or the loss of farmlands as problems. The regions of the Central Valley differ in their perceptions of regional problems. A much higher percentage of Sacramento Metro residents give "big problem" ratings to traffic congestion (44%), air pollution (34%), and growth and development (31%). In the South San Joaquin area, crime and gangs are perceived as a big problem (23%). The loss of farmlands is most often viewed as at least somewhat of a problem in the North San Joaquin area (60%). North Valley residents are the most likely to say that air pollution (42%), traffic congestion (49%), loss of farmlands (53%), and growth and development (56%) are "not a problem" for their region. Problem perceptions also differ somewhat among ethnic groups. Latinos are less likely than non-Hispanic whites to see traffic congestion (16% to 25%), growth (12% to 24%), air pollution (18% to 30%), and the loss of farmlands (18% to 26%) as big problems, while views are similar across these groups on crime and gangs and racial and ethnic tensions. Length of residence contributes to different perceptions, as well. People who have lived in the Central Valley less than five years are less likely than people who have lived there all of their lives to see loss of farmlands as a big problem (17% to 24%, respectively). Newcomers to the Central Valley are also more likely than lifelong residents to say that crime and gangs (43% to 26%), growth and development (52% to 43%), traffic congestion (51% to 40%), and racial and ethnic tensions (58% to 43%) are not problems in their regions. Those with higher household incomes and higher educational levels are more likely than others to say that traffic congestion, growth and development, air pollution, and loss of farmlands are currently big problems in their regions. Those with lower incomes are more likely to say that crime and gangs are a big problem. Regional Perceptions - 6 - "In your region, how much of a problem is __________ ? Is it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Air pollution* Big problem 28% 25% 34% 23% 28% 18% Some problem41 33 47 46 37 36 Not a problem30 42 19 30 35 45 Don't know 1 0 0 1 0 1 Traffic congestion Big problem 23% 9% 44% 21% 11% 16% Some problem36 41 38 39 31 28 Not a problem41 49 18 40 57 55 Don't know 0 1 0 0 1 1 Loss of farms and agriculture Big problem 23% 12% 22% 28% 24% 18% Some problem28 29 28 32 27 23 Not a problem41 53 41 32 43 52 Don't know 8 6 9 8 6 7 Population growth, urban development Big problem 21% 9% 31% 20% 16% 12% Some problem35 33 37 37 32 27 Not a problem43 56 31 41 51 60 Don't know 1 2 1 2 1 1 Crime and gangs Big problem 18% 13% 13% 18% 23% 22% Some problem52 55 53 55 50 44 Not a problem29 32 32 26 27 34 Don't know 1 0 2 1 0 0 Racial/ethnic tensions Big problem 8% 9% 5% 7% 10% 10% Some problem41 39 39 44 42 36 Not a problem49 50 53 48 46 52 Don't know 2 2 3 1 2 2 * Respondents were asked to rate air pollution aside from the impact of recent fires. Regional Perceptions - 7 - Regional Satisfaction The survey asked Central Valley residents how they feel about public colleges and universities, outdoor leisure activities, housing they can afford, and job opportunities in their regions. Earlier, the PPIC Statewide Survey showed that Central Valley residents are more satisfied with the affordability of housing and less satisfied with job opportunities than those living in the Los Angeles region or San Francisco Bay area. In this survey, we found that, in general, Central Valley residents are at least somewhat satisfied with the availability of housing they can afford (80%) and job opportunities (64%) in their region. More than four in 10 residents of the Central Valley say they are very satisfied with the public colleges and universities (48%) and outdoor leisure activities (43%) available in their region, one in three gives high praise to the housing that they can afford (37%), while only one-quarter are very satisfied with the job opportunities available in their region. Once again, there are considerable regional differences. Sacramento Metro residents are the most highly pleased with the availability of job opportunities (39%) and public colleges and universities (55%). Those living in the North Valley region (47%) and the Sacramento Metro area (53%) are the most pleased with the outdoor leisure activities available to them. South San Joaquin residents are the most likely to say they are very satisfied with the supply of housing they can afford (45%). Only 6 percent of North Valley residents are very happy about the job market in their region, and 52 percent are Ònot satisfiedÓ with the employment prospects. Latinos and non-Hispanic whites are about equally satisfied with job opportunities, affordable housing, and outdoor leisure activities. However, Latinos are less likely than non-Hispanic whites to say they are very satisfied with the availability of public colleges and universities in their region (39% to 51%). Satisfaction also varies by income, education, and length of time lived in the Central Valley. Residents with higher annual household incomes and higher educational levels are more likely than others to say they are very satisfied with the job opportunities, housing, outdoor activities, and public colleges and universities that their regions offer. Newcomers to the Central Valley are more likely than lifelong residents to say they are very satisfied with the availability of outdoor recreational activities (47% to 37%), but otherwise the two groups are similarly satisfied with their regions. Regional Perceptions - 8 - "How do you feel about the ____________ available in your region? Are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, or not satisfied?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Public colleges and universities Very satisfied 48% 49% 55% 48% 41% 39% Somewhat satisfied38 40 36 37 40 44 Not satisfied10 9 5101513 Don't know 4 2 4 5 4 4 Outdoor leisure activities Very satisfied 43% 47% 53% 37% 38% 40% Somewhat satisfied39 37 35 41 41 38 Not satisfied16 14 11 20 19 20 Don't know 2 2 1 2 2 2 Housing that you can afford Very satisfied 37% 28% 31% 36% 45% 36% Somewhat satisfied43 46 45 42 40 44 Not satisfied18 21 21 19 14 20 Don't know 2 5 3 3 1 0 Job opportunities Very satisfied 23% 6% 39% 19% 19% 26% Somewhat satisfied41 39 44 39 41 43 Not satisfied31 52 12 38 36 29 Don't know 5 3 5 4 4 2 Regional Perceptions - 9 - Regional Commuting Trends For most Central Valley residents, traffic congestion and commuting are not major issues. Over half of the employed residents surveyed say that traffic congestion when they travel to work is no problem. However, one in six say that traffic is a great problem, and one-third say it is somewhat of a problem. The commuting experience varies significantly by region. Sacramento Metro residents are the most likely to say they have a great problem (26%) or somewhat of a problem (38%) with traffic congestion while traveling to and from work. By comparison, half of North San Joaquin residents, four in 10 of South San Joaquin residents, and three in 10 of North Valley residents have at least some problem with traffic congestion. Few in the North Valley (7%) or South San Joaquin (8%) regions have a great problem during their commutes. There are no differences between Latinos and non-Hispanic whites in commuting perceptions. Nor are there variations in the experiences with traffic congestion on the way to and from work by household income, education level, or by length of residence in the Central Valley. One in eight employed residents in the Central Valley say they commute to workplaces in the San Francisco Bay area (9%) or the Los Angeles region (3%). More employed residents in the North San Joaquin area (20%) commute to the two major coastal metropolitan regions than do in the Sacramento Metro (11%), South San Joaquin (10%), or North Valley areas (6%). Latinos and non-Hispanic whites have similar rates of commuting outside of the Central Valley region. There are no major differences in long-distance commuting outside of the region by income group or educational levels. Newcomers who have lived in the Central Valley for less than five years are the most likely (20%) to say they travel to work in the coastal metropolitan regions. "On a typical day, how much of a problem is traffic congestion when you travel to and from work?" (asked of those who are employed) Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Great problem 15% 7% 26% 17% 8% 13% Some problem32 22 38 33 30 34 No problem53 71 36 50 62 53 "Do you commute to work in the California coastal metropolitan regions? (asked of those who are employed)" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Yes 12% 6% 11% 20% 10% 16% No88 94 89 80 90 84 - 11 - Central Valley Issues Most Important Issue When residents were asked to identify the most important issue facing the Central Valley, a group of five growth-related issues took precedence. Nearly half of those surveyed said that water (13%), the environment and pollution (10%), population growth (8%), loss of farmlands and agriculture (8%), and traffic and transportation (6%) are the biggest problems. Crime (8%), schools (6%), and jobs (5%) were named by about two in 10 residents. Ten percent named a variety of other issues. One in four were unable to cite any particular issue as being most important. Perceptions about the importance of issues varied across regions. In the North Valley, water was identified as the top policy issue. In the Sacramento Metro region, higher percentages focused on the environment, growth, and traffic than in other regions. In the North San Joaquin region, concern was more evenly spread among issues than elsewhere, and there was the least focus on water as a big issue. In the South San Joaquin region, crime was mentioned more often than in other regions; however, this region was second only to the North Valley in concern over water. Identification of issues also varied by ethnic group and length of residence. Latinos (24%) were less than half as likely as non-Hispanic whites (53%) to name the five growth-related issues mentioned above, much less frequently mentioning water (3% to 16%), growth (4% to 10%), and environment and pollution (5% to 12%). By contrast, Latinos were more likely than non-Hispanic whites to name crime (12% to 7%), jobs (9% to 4%), and schools (8% to 4%) as the top issues. Those who say they have lived in the Central Valley all of their lives are most likely to mention the environment and pollution (13%), water (11%), crime and gangs (9%), growth (8%), and loss of farmlands (7%) as the top problems facing the Central Valley, while one in four have no opinion. "What do you think is the most important public policy issue facing the Central Valley today?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San Joaquin Latino Water 13% 22% 11% 7% 15% 3% Environment, pollution10 7 14 8 9 5 Population growth and development 8 61410 4 4 Loss of farmlands, agriculture 8 4 9 9 8 6 Crime and gangs 8 6 7 71112 Traffic and transportation 6 3 9 6 5 6 Schools 6 4 7 7 4 8 Jobs and economy 5 4 2 6 7 9 Immigration, illegal immigration 2 0 0 1 4 1 Other* 812 612 812 Don't know26 32 21 27 25 34 * Includes several issues, each mentioned by one percent or fewer Central Valley residents. Central Valley Issues - 12 - Economic Conditions A solid majority (55%) say the Central Valley economy is in excellent or good shape today, one- third rate it as fair, and less than 10 percent say it is doing poorly. These ratings vary across the four regions, with three in four saying the economy is excellent or good in the Sacramento Metro area, and half giving positive ratings in the North San Joaquin and South San Joaquin areas, compared to only 37 percent in the North Valley. There are no differences between Latinos and non- Hispanic whites. In line with the positive assessments of the economy, most feel that the Central Valley is headed in the right direction rather than the wrong direction (63% to 29%) and that the quality of life in the Central Valley is going well rather than going badly (81% to 17%). These positive assessments are similar to evaluations of California as a whole in the PPIC Statewide Surveys. "In general, how would you rate the economy in the Central Valley?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Excellent 9% 3% 16% 8% 7% 11% Good46 34 56 42 42 42 Fair35 48 22 39 39 35 Poor 913 5111010 Don't know 1 2 1 0 2 2 Image Over half of the residents are so happy with the way things are going in the Central Valley that they agree with the statement, ÒThe Central Valley is the best place to live in California today.Ó Sacramento Metro residents are evenly divided on whether or not the Central Valley is superior to the rest of California, while those in the North Valley express the most positive sentiments. Latinos (67%) are much more likely than non-Hispanic whites (48%) to say that the Central Valley is the best place to live in California. Those who have lived in the Central Valley all of their lives (60%) are the most likely to say they are living in the best place in California, while those who have moved to the Central Valley in the last five years (38%) are the least likely to agree with this statement. "Do you agree or disagree with this statement: The Central Valley is the best place to live in California today." Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Agree 52% 59% 47% 52% 53% 67% Disagree45 37 50 44 45 31 Don't know 3 4 3 4 2 2 Central Valley Issues - 13 - Identity Although most residents give the Central Valley high marks as a place to live, they are more inclined to identify their city or community, rather than the Central Valley, as their home. If they were traveling in the Los Angeles or San Francisco areas and were asked where they lived, only one in five would identify himself or herself as a Central Valley resident. Two in three say they would name their city or community. People in the North San Joaquin (29%) and South San Joaquin (26%) areas were more likely than people in other regions to identify the Central Valley as their home. Latinos (27%) are more likely than non-Hispanic whites (20%) to say they are from the Central Valley, and non-Hispanic whites are more inclined than Latinos to identify with their city or community (68% to 58%). "If you were in the San Francisco Bay area or Los Angeles and someone asked you where you live, would you give the name of your city or community, or the county or region you live in, or would you say that you are from the Central Valley?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino City or community 66% 67% 73% 62% 62% 58% County or region11 15 12 7 10 12 Central valley21 15 12 29 26 27 Other, donÕt know 2 3 3 2 2 3 The Future While their assessments of todayÕs conditions are generally positive, residents are evenly divided when asked if the Central Valley will be a better place or a worse place in the future (37% to 33%). Only about one in four say it will stay the same. However, there is an interesting North/South divide, with residents of the North San Joaquin (39%) and South San Joaquin (43%) areas more likely than residents in the North Valley and Sacramento Metro areas to say things will be better. Latinos (55%) are much more likely than non-Hispanic whites (30%) to say the Central Valley will be a better place. Whether the future will be better or worse, most residents (66%) see themselves living in the Central Valley five years from now. There are no major differences across regions or racial and ethnic groups, but those who have lived in the Central Valley all of their lives are much more likely to say they will be staying (63%) than those who have lived in the Central Valley for less than five years (51%). "In the future, do you think that the Central Valley will be a better place to live than it is now, a worse place to live than it is now, or that there will be no change?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Better place 37% 30% 32% 39% 43% 55% Worse place33 34 41 36 25 14 No change26 34 23 21 29 26 Don't know 4 2 4 4 3 5 Central Valley Issues - 14 - Growth Perceptions Most residents see rapid growth as a major fact of life in the Central Valley in the recent past and the foreseeable future. Three in four say that the population of the Central Valley has been growing rapidly in recent years and a similar proportion expect the population to grow rapidly in the next 10 years. Although these perceptions and predictions are similar across all four regions, residents in the Sacramento Metro and North San Joaquin areas are the most likely to say that there has been rapid growth and that it will continue. Few in any region expect no growth or a population decline. "In the past few years, do you think the population of the Central Valley has been growing rapidly, growing slowly, staying about the same, or declining?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Growing rapidly 77% 66% 83% 82% 74% 75% Growing slowly14 21 10 13 17 16 Staying about the same 1 2 1 0 1 1 Declining 5 8 3 3 6 7 Don't know 3 3 3 2 2 1 "In the next 10 years, do you think that the population in the Central Valley region will grow rapidly, grow slowly, stay about the same, or decline?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Grow rapidly 74% 63% 80% 81% 70% 70% Grow slowly15 21 11 13 18 17 Stay about the same 1 2 1 1 1 2 Declining 8 14 6 4 9 9 Don't know 2 0 2 1 2 2 Policy Options Given the expectations for rapid growth, residents support a variety of policies for improving the future of the Central Valley. Residents were asked to rate eight policy prescriptions. Protecting agricultural lands (52%) and preserving wetlands (49%) were identified as "extremely effective" policies by the highest percentage of residents. These were followed in order by expanding public transit (46%), building a high-speed rail passenger system (43%), encouraging job centers near existing housing (41%), increasing freeways (37%), restricting development to existing urban and suburban areas (33%), and establishing growth boundaries (32%). Central Valley Issues - 15 - Support is strong across regions for protecting farmlands and preserving wetlands, but there are regional differences on other policies. For example, North Valley residents are less enthusiasticÑand Sacramento Metro and North San Joaquin residents more enthusiasticÑthan others about public transit proposals. Latinos look more favorably than non-Hispanic whites on encouraging job centers (53% to 37%), building high-speed rail (54% to 40%), and increasing freeways (50% to 33%). Central Valley and San Francisco Bay area residents show similar enthusiasm for protecting wetlands, increasing freeways, establishing growth boundaries, and restricting future development to urban and suburban areas, but Central Valley residents are less supportive of expanding public transit (46% to 61%), according to the Bay Area Council Poll. There are no comparisons available on protecting farmlands, encouraging job centers to develop near housing, or building a high-speed passenger train. "We'd like to ask you about ways to improve the quality of life in the Central Valley over the next 10 years. How effective do you think the following activities would be on a scale of 1 to 5, where 1 represents some- thing that would be 'not at all effective' and 5 represents something that would be 'extremely effective'?" % who rated an activity "extremely effective"Ñi.e., who gave an activity a 5 score Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San Joaquin Latino Protecting farms and agricultural lands from urban development 52% 50% 51% 54% 53% 53% Preserving wetlands, rivers, environmentally sensitive areas49 49 53 50 46 50 Expanding bus, light rail, public transit systems46 33 55 51 40 53 Building a high-speed passenger rail system from San Diego to San Francisco through the Central Valley43 27 43 49 46 54 Encouraging job centers to develop near existing housing41 37 44 44 39 53 Increasing freeway capacity37 30 40 39 35 50 Restricting development to existing suburban and urban areas33 28 33 34 33 30 Establishing growth boundaries for future development32 25 34 35 32 30 Central Valley Issues - 16 - Future Water Needs Central Valley residents overwhelmingly favor expanding the stateÕs system of reservoirs by capturing flood waters and storing them in off-stream reservoirs. This support is consistent with residentsÕ concerns about water and their perceptions of future growth. However, it could well be at odds with the very high priority they also place on protecting wetlands, rivers, and other environmentally sensitive areas. There is strong consensus across regions and racial and ethnic groups for expanding the stateÕs water system. A similar level of support was found in the Bay Area Council Poll. "Regarding ways to help the Central Valley meet its future water needs, do you favor or oppose expanding the state's system of reservoirs by capturing more flood waters and storing them in off-stream water storage areas?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Favor 81% 76% 78% 82% 84% 87% Oppose14 21 17 12 11 10 Don't know 5 3 5 6 5 3 New University of California Campus Most Central Valley residents (87%) believe that the new University of California campus at Merced is important to the future economy and quality of life in the Central Valley, and half believe it is "very important." North San Joaquin and South San Joaquin residents are the most likely to say the new U.C. Campus will be "very important." Latinos (75%) are very much more likely than non-Hispanic whites (46%) to rate it as "very important." Few residents in any region or racial or ethnic group think the new U.C. campus is not important to the Central Valley. "A new university campus will be built in the Central Valley. How important is the University of California at Merced to the future economy and quality of life in the Central Valley?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Very important 53% 46% 48% 61% 56% 75% Somewhat important34 37 38 29 34 20 Not important10 14 10 8 8 4 Don't know 3 3 4 2 2 1 - 17 - Political and Social Trends Civic and Religious Life How involved are Central Valley residents in activities other than work and home life? Many said they were involved in religious activities (58%), volunteer work (57%), or local and neighborhood issues (49%). In contrast, only 24 percent are involved in political activities. However, the proportion of those who are "very" involved is much lower: 25 percent in religious activity, 19 percent in volunteer work, 8 percent in neighborhood activities, and 3 percent in political activities. Compared to all Californians (in the PPIC Statewide Survey), Central Valley residents are a little more likely to be engaged in politics (24% to 17%) and local issues (49% to 41%) but not volunteer work (57% to 61%). There are no statewide comparisons available on religious activities. Some regional and ethnic differences are observable. For example, Sacramento Metro residents are less likely to say they are very involved in religious activities. Latinos are more likely than non- Hispanic whites to be involved in religious activities (65% to 56%) and less likely to be involved in volunteer work (48% to 60%). Those who have lived in the Central Valley all of their lives are more likely than newcomers (i.e., resident less than five years) to be involved in religious activities (58% to 46%). "Are you very involved, somewhat involved, or not involved in ..." Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Religious or spiritual activities Very involved 25% 25% 20% 29% 27% 20% Somewhat involved33 31 32 34 35 45 Not involved42 44 48 37 38 35 Volunteer or charity work Very involved 19% 16% 21% 20% 19% 14% Somewhat involved38 42 40 35 37 34 Not involved43 42 39 45 44 52 Local and neighborhood issues Very involved 8% 7% 8% 7% 8% 6% Somewhat involved41 41 42 43 40 40 Not involved51 52 50 50 52 54 Political activities Very involved 3% 3% 3% 2% 3% 2% Somewhat involved21 18 23 21 19 17 Not involved76 79 74 77 78 81 Political and Social Trends - 18 - Political Profile Where are Central Valley residents on the political spectrum? Compared to all Californians (in the PPIC Statewide Survey), Central Valley residents are a little more likely to identify themselves as conservative (41% to 35%). However, relatively few Central Valley residents consider themselves to be ÒveryÓ conservative. In fact, the largest group, 58 percent, is composed of those who say they are middle-of the-road to somewhat conservative in their politics. There are regional and ethnic differences across regions. Sacramento Metro residents (34%) are the least likely to describe themselves as at all conservative, while North Valley residents are the least likely to describe themselves as at all liberal (18%). Latinos are just as likely as non-Hispanic whites to describe themselves as conservatives (40% to 42%). "Would you consider yourself to be politically very liberal, somewhat liberal, middle-of-the-road, somewhat conservative, or very conservative?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Very liberal 7% 4% 7% 7% 8% 9% Somewhat liberal19 14 24 17 17 22 Middle-of-the-road30 35 34 29 27 24 Somewhat conservative28 32 25 27 31 28 Very conservative13 13 9 16 15 12 DonÕt Know 3 2 1 4 2 5 Sources of Political Information Central Valley residents are like most Californians (in the most recent PPIC Statewide Survey) in saying that they get most of their political news from television rather than from newspapers. Sacramento Metro residents are evenly divided between television and newspapers as the major source of their political information, while television dominates in the other regions. The reliance on television over newspapers is greater among Latinos (63% to 19%) than among non-Hispanic whites (41% to 31%). The only education and income groups that rely on newspapers more than on television are college graduates (39% to 29%) and households with annual incomes of $80,000 or more (38% to 26%). Political and Social Trends - 19 - "Do you get most of your information on what's going on in politics today from newspapers, television, radio, magazines, talking to people, or the internet?" Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Television 46% 55% 37% 51% 48% 63% Newspapers29 22 35 26 27 19 Radio10 10 12 8 9 6 Talking to people 8 8 8 7 9 8 Internet 4 2 5 4 5 3 Magazines 2 2 2 3 2 1 Other 1 1 1 1 0 0 Computers and the Internet Most Central Valley residents have had at least some experience with computers and the internet. Seven in 10 say they have used a computer at home, work, or school; 54 percent have gone on line to access the Internet or e-mail; and 55 percent have a personal computer at home. These numbers are slightly below the California averages in the most recent PPIC Statewide Survey. Many Central Valley residents consider themselves frequent users of computers. Nearly half say they often use a computer at home, work, or school, while 37 percent say they often use a computer to access e-mail or the Internet, and 35 percent say they often use a personal computer at home. Across regions, Sacramento Metro residents show the highest rates of computer use, computer ownership, and internet/e-mail use, with rates that are at least on a par with California averages. By contrast, North Valley residents are the least likely to have ever used computers, to have ever used e-mail or the internet, and to have computers in their homes. There is strong evidence of a Òdigital divideÓ in the Central Valley. Latinos lag behind non- Hispanic whites in frequent use of computers at home, work, or school (34% to 53%), frequent use of the internet or e-mail (21% to 40%), and frequent use of a personal computer at home (18% to 40%). Most Latinos have not accessed the internet or e-mail (62%) and do not have a computer in their home (65%). College graduates are more likely than those with a high school education or less to often use a computer (73% to 25%), to often use the internet or e-mail (58% to 17%), and to often use a computer at home (54% to 17%). Across income groups, 61 percent of households with annual incomes under $40,000 do not have a home computer, while 84 percent of households with incomes of $80,000 or more do. Political and Social Trends - 20 - "Do you yourself ever use a computer at home, at work, or at school?" (if yes: Do you use a computer often or only sometimes?") Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Yes, often 49% 41% 57% 50% 44% 34% Yes, sometimes21 20 21 18 22 26 No30 39 22 32 34 40 "Do you ever go on-line to access the internet or world wide web or to send or receive e-mail?" (if yes: Do you do this often or only sometimes?") Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Yes, often 37% 29% 47% 35% 31% 21% Yes, sometimes17 18 18 17 17 17 No16 14 13 16 18 22 DonÕt use computers30 39 22 32 34 40 "Do you have any type of personal computer, including laptops in your home? These do not include game machines such as Nintendo or Sega. ( if yes: Do you use your home computer often or only sometimes?") Region All AdultsNorth ValleySacramento MetroNorth San JoaquinSouth San JoaquinLatino Yes, often 35% 28% 41% 32% 34% 18% Yes, sometimes20 22 21 20 17 17 No45 50 38 48 49 65 - 21 - Survey Methodology The Central Valley Survey is a special edition of the PPIC Statewide Survey, which is directed by Mark Baldassare, senior fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California, with research assistance from Jonathan Cohen and Christopher Hoene. The survey was conducted in collaboration with the Great Valley Center; however, the survey methodology and questions and the content of this report were solely determined by Mark Baldassare. The survey benefited from consultation with Hans Johnson and Michael Teitz at PPIC and Carol Whiteside at the Great Valley Center. The findings of the survey are based on telephone interviews with 2,016 adult residents in the 18-county Central Valley region, interviewed from October 18 to October 24, 1999. 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 the Central Valley were eligible for calling. Telephone numbers in the survey sample were called up to four 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 using the Òlast birthday methodÓ to avoid biases in age and gender. Each interview took an average of 20 minutes to complete. Interviewing was conducted in English or Spanish, as needed. We used recent U.S. Census and state figures to compare the demographic characteristics of the survey sample with characteristics of the Central ValleyÕs adult population. The survey sample was closely comparable to U.S. 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 2,016 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 adults in the Central Valley 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 this report, we refer to four geographic regions in the Central Valley. ÒNorth ValleyÓ includes Butte, Colusa, Glenn, Shasta, Sutter, Tehama, and Yuba counties (12 percent of the Central ValleyÕs adult population). ÒSacramento MetroÓ includes Placer, Sacramento, and Yolo counties (30 percent of the population). ÒNorth San JoaquinÓ includes Merced, San Joaquin, and Stanislaus counties (22 percent of the population). ÒSouth San JoaquinÓ includes Fresno, Kern, Kings, Madera, and Tulare counties (36 percent of the population). We contrast the results for Latinos with results for non-Hispanic whites. Latinos account for about 22 percent of the Central Valley's adult population and constitute one of the fastest growing groups in this region. The sample sizes for the African American and Asian subgroups are not large enough for separate statistical analysis. In some cases, the Central Valley Survey uses questions and the results of responses recorded in the PPIC Statewide Surveys conducted in 1998 and 1999, the Orange County Annual Surveys conducted by Mark Baldassare and Cheryl Katz for U.C. Irvine since 1982, the Bay Area Poll conducted by the Bay Area Council in 1998, and national surveys conducted by the Pew Research Center in 1998 and 1999 and by the University of Virginia for the American Association of Retired Persons in 1996. 23 PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY: SPECIAL SURVEY OF THE CENTRAL VALLEY OCTOBER 18 Ð 24, 1999 2,016 CENTRAL VALLEY ADULT RESIDENTS; ENGLISH AND SPANISH MARGIN OF ERROR +/- 2% AT 95% CONFIDENCE LEVEL FOR TOTAL SAMPLE I would like to begin by asking you some questions about you, your community, and the region you live in. 1. Which of the following best describes the place where you now liveÑa large city, a suburb, a small city or town, or a rural area? 21% large city 12 suburb 48 small city or town 18 rural area 1 other 2. Did you grow up in the community where you now live? 32% yes 68 no 3. Overall, how would you rate your community as a place to live? Would you say it is excellent, good, fair, or poor? 26% excellent 47 good 21 fair 6 poor Now, IÕd like to ask you how you would rate some of the public services you receive in your local area. (rotate questions 4 to 8) 4. Police protection. Would you say this is excellent, good, fair, or poor? 21% excellent 48 good 22 fair 7 poor 2 don't know 5. Parks and other public recreational facilities. Would you say they are excellent, good, fair, or poor? 23% excellent 45 good 22 fair 8 poor 2 don't know 6. Local freeways, streets, and roads. Would you say they are excellent, good, fair, or poor? 12% excellent 46 good 32 fair 10 poor 0 don't know 7. Local public schools. Would you say they are excellent, good, fair, or poor? 16% excellent 43 good 23 fair 9 poor 9 don't know8. Local public libraries. Would you say they are excellent, good, fair, or poor? 15% excellent 45 good 21 fair 8 poor 11 don't know 9. How would you rate the performance of your city government in solving problems in your city or communityÑexcellent, good, fair or poor? 5% excellent 34 good 38 fair 15 poor 4 don't live in a city 4 don't know 10. How would you rate the performance of county government in solving problems in your countyÑ excellent, good, fair, or poor? 3% excellent 38 good 42 fair 13 poor 4 don't know Next, a few questions about the region you live in. 11. How much of a problem is traffic congestion in your regionÑis it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem? 23% big problem 36 somewhat of a problem 41 not a problem 12. How much of a problem are population growth and urban development in your regionÑare they a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem? 21% big problem 35 somewhat of a problem 43 not a problem 1 donÕt know 13. Aside from the impact of the recent forest fires and the tire fires, how much of a problem is air pollution in your regionÑa big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem? 28% big problem 41 somewhat of a problem 30 not a problem 1 donÕt know - 24 - 14. How much of a problem are crime and gangs in your regionÑare they a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem? 18% big problem 52 somewhat of a problem 29 not a problem 1 donÕt know 15. How much of a problem are racial and ethnic tensions in your regionÑare they a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem? 8% big problem 41 somewhat of a problem 49 not a problem 2 donÕt know 16. How much of a problem is the loss of farms and agricultural land in your regionÑis it a big problem, somewhat of a problem, or not a problem? 23% big problem 28 somewhat of a problem 41 not a problem 8 donÕt know 17. How do you feel about the job opportunities that are available in your regionÑare you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, or not satisfied? 23% very satisfied 41 somewhat satisfied 31 not satisfied 5 donÕt know 18. How do you feel about the availability of housing that you can afford in your regionÑare you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, or not satisfied? 37% very satisfied 43 somewhat satisfied 18 not satisfied 2 donÕt know 19. How do you feel about the availability of public colleges and universities in your regionÑare you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, or not satisfied? 48% very satisfied 38 somewhat satisfied 10 not satisfied 4 donÕt know 20. How do you feel about the availability of outdoor leisure activities in your regionÑare you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, or not satisfied? 43% very satisfied 39 somewhat satisfied 16 not satisfied 2 donÕt knowNext, we are interested in your opinions about the broader geographic region you live inÑthe Central ValleyÑwhich is the inland area of California stretching from Bakersfield to Redding. 21. What do you think is the most important public policy issue facing the Central Valley today? (code, donÕt read) 13% water 10 environment, pollution 8 growth, overpopulation 8 crime, gangs 8 loss of farmlands, agriculture 6 traffic and transportation 6 schools, education 5 jobs, the economy 2 immigration, illegal immigration 1 housing costs, housing availability 1 sprawl 1 poverty, the poor, the homeless, welfare 1 drugs 1 lack of values, morals, religion 1 natural disasters 2 other (specify) 26 don't know 22. And do you think that things in the Central Valley are generally going in the right direction or the wrong direction? 63% right direction 29 wrong direction 8 don't know 23. In general, how would you rate the economy in the Central ValleyÑis it excellent, good, fair, or poor? 9% excellent 46 good 35 fair 9 poor 1 don't know 24. Thinking about the quality of life in the Central Valley, how do you think things are goingÑvery well, somewhat well, somewhat badly, or very badly? 17% very well 64 somewhat well 15 somewhat badly 2 very badly 2 don't know 25. Do you agree or disagree with this statement: The Central Valley is the best place to live in California today? 52% agree 45 disagree 3 don't know 26. And in the future, do you think that the Central Valley will be a better place to live than it is now, a worse place to live than it is now, or that there will be no change? 37% better place 33 worse place 26 no change 4 don't know - 25 - 27. Five years from now, do you see yourself living in the Central Valley or living somewhere else? (if elsewhere: Is that inside or outside of California?) 66% yes, living in the Central Valley 15 no, elsewhere in California 15 no, elsewhere outside of California 4 don't know 28. If you were in the San Francisco Bay area or Los Angeles and someone asked you where you live, would you give the name of your city or community, or the county or region you live in, or would you say that you are from the Central Valley? 66% city or community 11 county or region 21 Central Valley 2 other, donÕt know 29. In the past few years, do you think the population of the Central Valley has been growing rapidly, growing slowly, staying about the same, or declining? 77% growing rapidly 14 growing slowly 1 staying about the same 5 declining 3 don't know 30. And in the next 10 years, do you think that the population in the Central Valley region will grow rapidly, grow slowly, stay about the same, or decline? 74% grow rapidly 15 grow slowly 1 stay about the same 8 decline 2 don't know Now, IÕd like to ask you about ways to improve the quality of life in the Central Valley over the next 10 years. How effective do you think the following activities would be on a scale of 1 to 5, where 1 represents something that would be Ònot at all effectiveÓ and 5 represents something that would be "extremely effective"? (rotate questions 31-38) 31. Restricting future development to existing suburban and urban areas rather than expanding into rural areasÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 7% (1) not at all effective 9 (2) 29 (3) 19 (4) 33 (5) extremely effective 3 don't know 32. Increasing freeway capacityÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 8% (1) not at all effective 10 (2) 23 (3) 21 (4) 37 (5) extremely effective 1 don't know33. Establishing growth boundaries within which future development would be confinedÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 7% (1) not at all effective 8 (2) 27 (3) 23 (4) 32 (5) extremely effective 3 don't know 34. Preserving wetlands, rivers, and other environmentally sensitive areasÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 6% (1) not at all effective 7 (2) 17 (3) 19 (4) 49 (5) extremely effective 2 don't know 35. Encouraging job centers to develop near existing housing to reduce commute times for workersÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 6% (1) not at all effective 8 (2) 21 (3) 22 (4) 41 (5) extremely effective 2 don't know 36. Expanding bus, light rail, and train public transit systemsÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 6% (1) not at all effective 9 (2) 17 (3) 21 (4) 46 (5) extremely effective 1 don't know 37. Building a high-speed passenger rail system to run from San Diego to San Francisco through the Central ValleyÕs major citiesÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 12% (1) not at all effective 8 (2) 18 (3) 17 (4) 43 (5) extremely effective 2 don't know 38. Protecting farms and agricultural lands from urban developmentÑon a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being not at all effective and 5 being extremely effective? 5% (1) not at all effective 4 (2) 17 (3) 20 (4) 52 (5) extremely effective 2 don't know - 26 - 39. Regarding ways to help the Central Valley meet its future water needs, do you favor or oppose expanding the stateÕs system of reservoirs by capturing more flood waters and storing them in off-stream water storage areas? 81% favor 14 oppose 5 don't know 40. A new university campus will be built in the Central Valley. How important is the University of California at Merced to the future economy and quality of life in the Central ValleyÑvery important, somewhat important, or not important? 53% very important 34 somewhat important 10 not important 3 don't know 41. On another topic, some people are registered to vote and others are not. Are you absolutely certain you are registered to vote? (if yes: Are you registered as a Democrat, a Republican, another party, or independent?) 32% yes, Democrat 30 yes, Republican 4 yes, other party 11 yes, independent 23 no, not registered 42. Would you consider yourself to be politically very liberal, somewhat liberal, middle-of-the-road, somewhat conservative, or very conservative? 7% very liberal 19 somewhat liberal 30 middle-of-the-road 28 somewhat conservative 13 very conservative 3 donÕt know 43. Would you say that you follow whatÕs going on in government and public affairs most of the time, some of the time, only now and then, hardly ever, or never? 43% most of the time 35 some of the time 15 only now and then 6 hardly ever 1 never 44. And do you get most of your information on whatÕs going on in politics today from newspapers, television, radio, magazines, talking to people, or the internet? 29% newspapers 46 television 10 radio 2 magazines 8 talking to people 5 internet 0 otherOn another topic, we are interested in learning about how people are spending their time these days. I am going to read to you a list of activities that people get involved in. For each one I'd like you to tell me whether you feel that you are very involved, somewhat involved, or not really involved in that activity these days. (if necessary: By involvement we mean how much time you spend on something, compared to other people.) (rotate questions 45 to 48) 45. Religious or spiritual activities, including time spent with religious organizations? Are you very involved, somewhat involved, or not involved? 25% very involved 33 somewhat involved 42 not involved 46. Political activities related to political parties, candidates, and election campaigns? Are you very involved, somewhat involved, or not involved? 3% very involved 21 somewhat involved 76 not involved 47. Working on local issues and neighborhood problems? Are you very involved, somewhat involved, or not involved? 8% very involved 41 somewhat involved 51 not involved 48. Volunteer or charity work for which you are not paid? Are you very involved, somewhat involved, or not involved? 19% very involved 38 somewhat involved 43 not involved 49. On another topic, do you yourself ever use a computer at home, at work, or at school? (if yes: Do you use a computer often or only sometimes?) 49% yes, often (ask q. 50) 21 yes, sometimes (ask q. 50) 30 no (skip to q.51) 50. Do you ever go on-line to access the internet or world wide web or to send or receive e-mail? (if yes: Do you do this often or only sometimes?) 37% yes, often 17 yes, sometimes 46 no 51. Do you have any type of personal computer, including laptops, in your home? These do not include game machines such as Nintendo or Sega. (if yes: Do you use your home computer often or only sometimes?) 35% yes, often 20 yes, sometimes 45 no - 27 - [Questions 52-63 are demographic questions. Three are of more general interest and are included below.] 54. How long have you lived in the Central Valley region? 44% less than five years 19 five years to less than 10 years 20 10 years to 20 years 17 more than 20 years 58. Do you commute to work in the California coastal metropolitan regions? (if yes: Is that in Los Angeles or the San Francisco Bay area?) 3% yes, Los Angeles 9 yes, San Francisco Bay area 88 no 59. On a typical day, how much of a problem is traffic congestion when you travel to and from work? Would you say it is no problem at all, somewhat of a problem, or a great problem? 53% no problem at all 32 somewhat of a problem 15 a great problem - 28 - PPIC STATEWIDE SURVEY Advisory Committee Ruben Barrales President Joint Venture Ð Silicon Valley Network Angela Blackwell President PolicyLink Nick Bollman Senior Program Director The James Irvine Foundation Mollyann Brodie Vice President Kaiser Family Foundation Matt Fong Attorney Sheppard Mullin William Hauck President California Business Roundtable Sherry Bebitch Jeffe Senior Associate Claremont Graduate University Monica Lozano Associate Publisher and Executive Editor La Opini—n Jerry Lubenow Director of Publications Institute of Governmental Studies University of California, Berkeley Donna Lucas President Nelson CommunicationsMax Neiman Director Center for Social and Behavioral Research University of California, Riverside Jerry Roberts Managing Editor San Francisco Chronicle Dan Rosenheim News Director KRON-TV Richard T. Schlosberg, III President and CEO The Packard Foundation Carol Stogsdill Senior Vice President APCO Associates Cathy Taylor Editorial Page Editor Orange County Register Steven Toben Program Officer The Hewlett Foundation Raymond L. Watson Vice Chairman of the Board The Irvine Company Carol Whiteside President Great Valley Center" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 09:34:39" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(6) "closed" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(9) "s_1199mbs" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 02:34:39" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 09:34:39" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["guid"]=> string(51) "http://148.62.4.17/wp-content/uploads/S_1199MBS.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) }