Spokane Community Indicators e-Newsletter

Issue #34

INDICATOR NEWS


WELCOME TO THE SPOKANE COUNTY TRENDS BLOG!


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Most indicators on the Spokane County Trends website are updated annually, although some indicators can only be updated every two-years and others every five-years. There are even a few indicators receiving updates as frequently as four times a year.

However, even the most enthusiastic user of the Trends website has had no way to tell for sure when an indicator was updated - until now.

Subscribers to this newsletter received an email a few weeks back introducing them to the new Spokane County Trends Blog. As the email explained, the blog will be used to keep everyone up-to-date as to…

HAVE YOU "CHECKED OUT" THE SPOKANE PUBLIC LIBRARY BUSINESS RESOURCE CENTER?

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The technological revolution that brought us personal computers and the internet has opened up access to things unimaginable to most people just a few years ago. However, this access now available in most U.S. homes has put a strain on local libraries to stay relevant.

Simon Jenkins, columnist for The Guardian, sees the library dichotomy as "People like having them around, and are angry if they close. But as for using them, well, there is so little time these days."

The Spokane Public Library (SPL) has adapted well to the impact of the internet. However, people might not be aware of…


COUNTRY OF ORIGIN FOR MIGRANTS LIVING IN THE U.S.



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Quality data can serve as a starting point allowing people to talk about sensitive subjects. Good data can also help us cut through the noise created by highly charged, political hot-button topics, such as immigration and immigration policies in the U.S.

Pew Research tracks the country of origin for international migrants living in the U.S. going back to 1990. Pew's numbers represent all people born outside of the U.S. who are currently living in the U.S. and includes: naturalized citizens, people on a work visa or through another legal process, and undocumented immigrants.

An international migrant is defined…

INDICATORS IN ACTION

ANNUAL TAXABLE RETAIL SALES STILL GROWING -

2.2.4 Graph

The national economy has received quite a bit of media attention over the past year. Defying a few expectations, it has continued to do well. Now the question has become what about the second half of the year? While there are a few different measurements providing insight into the strength of an economy, the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is perhaps the best known. The U.S. Department of Commerce Bureau of Economic Analysis defines the GDP as the total "market value of goods and services produced by labor and property".

Unfortunately, the GDP is not available for individual U.S. counties, although it is for metro areas. But the metro area of…

COUNTY LABOR FORCE BACK TO PRE-GREAT RECESSION NUMBERS -

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The size of the civilian labor force and the civilian labor force participation rate are two key measures of the labor market. For government, they speak to their success in encouraging entry into the labor market. For local recruitment efforts, the depth of the labor pool can be promoted to outside businesses. For the private sector, they signify the ability of an area to support a growing economic base through wages and salaries. For both government and the private sector, they can provide a deeper look into the standard employment rate of an area and the overall workforce capacity of a local economy.

The Civilian Labor Force Participation Rate is calculated by dividing the total number of employed people by the total…

AQUIFER LEVELS STEADY WHILE CONSUMPTION INCREASES -

4.2.3 Graph

The Spokane Valley - Rathdrum Prairie (SVRP) Aquifer provides water to over 500,000 residents of Kootenai County, Idaho and Spokane County, Washington. As the SVRP Aquifer is the only source of drinking water for at least 50% of local residents, in 1978, it was the second aquifer in the nation to be designated a "sole source aquifer" by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). This designation initiated special management practices such as working to eliminate septic tank systems and pre-treating storm water on the ground above the aquifer.

Although formed naturally over millions of years, the SVRP Aquifer was shaped more recently during the last Glacial…

5-QUESTIONS WITH:

SHELLY O'QUINN - CEO, INNOVIA FOUNDATION

Shelly O'Quinn Photo
 

Q: Your organization has recently gone through a name change. Has the strategic direction of the foundation changed as well?
A: The name change to Innovia - or 'innovative way' reflects a new emphasis on driving community transformation. Our goal is to serve as a catalyst for change in the region in the following way. First, we aim to better understand the needs of the constituents that nonprofits are serving. Second, we want to build strong relationships between donors and nonprofits, so philanthropy can engage effectively in the community. Finally, we intend to support nonprofits in outcomes assessment and performance improvement…