NC Media Watch

A quest for reason and accuracy in letters to the editor, guest editorials and other issues of interest to the citizens of Western Nevada County.

Saturday, September 11, 2004

Terry Lamphier’s facts in an Other Voices, Sift through the stats on growth, September 11, 2004, needs a second look.

I am on vacation and have not read the report, but some of Lamphiers numbers and logic just did not ring true, and I could not let them pass.
“First, the report assumes continued growth at comparable historical rates. Note that this is a political decision and not a given.”
Please note that the “historical growth rate” in the study is consistent with the Grass Valley General Plan, which was subject to extensive citizen input. It was a citizen reenforced decision.

For the record, Grass Valley’s growth rate from 1990 to 2000 was 1.1 percent. The County’s growth rate was 1.38 percent, according to the California Department of Finance.
“Nevada County's population growth rate is 10 percent higher than the California average. . .”
According to the California Legislative Analysts Office the state population grew at roughly 1.6 percent per year. Details here.

According to the No Population Growth web site, California’s population from 1990 to 2000 grew 13.8 percent, or an average of 1.38 per year.

You do the math, but it looks like Nevada County’s annual growth matches the states. If the LAO number are used, it is falling behind. So, where did the scary “10 percent higher than the California average” come from?
“We are doing more than our fair share to accommodate growth.”
Not according to a Sierra Economic Development District in the The 2002 Regional Housing Needs Plan. This part of a statewide mandate to address housing issues that are related to future growth in Nevada and Sierra Counties. Details here.
“Western Nevada County's annual rate of overall job creation is about half of Roseville or Rocklin's.”
Yes, because we lack the infrastructure to capture the major manufactures locating in Rosville and Rocklin. If we do not pay attention, small and medium business will soon be unable to expand or relocate due to the lack of infrastructure.
“This developer-paid-for report suggests that despite tremendous local growth, workers can't afford homes here. . . .
While the developers paid for the report, the City selected the contractor and supervised its development. They wanted a quality assessment. More on this issue once I have read the report. Housing prices are function of supply and demand. More houses will lower demand and produce more affordable houses for teachers, firemen, police and health care professionals. Build them now!

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