Moffat County holds its own among the most livable counties in the Rocky Mountain region, according to the findings of a new study by Colorado College.
The findings are included in "The State of the Rockies" report issued last month. In it, Colorado College professors F. Patrick Holmes and Walter Hecox assign grades to counties throughout the Mountain West for a set of 15 individual indicators.
The report gave Moffat County a solid "B" overall, which is a nice confirmation that we live in a fairly vibrant community. But it's a pretty anonymous B ranking. Unlike Routt County, which received an "A," Moffat County didn't crack the Top 10 in any category. Routt was recognized for having a high per-capita number of nonprofit organizations and for the economic vitality of its small businesses.
The report measured the expected community indicators such as unemployment, income, poverty and education. But it also looked at "social and cultural capital," which measure the more esoteric qualities of a community's health -- things like meeting the needs of migrant workers and immigrants and supporting arts, culture and the humanities.
The report looked at 280 counties, some of them urban, some rural and some "micropolitan," which is a federal standard describing counties greater than 2,500 people, but not big enough to be considered urban.
Moffat County is in the micropolitan category.
The report makes for some interesting reading. We think it should be required reading for anyone who has any interest in making Moffat County a better place to live.
To see the entire report go to www.coloradocollege.edu and follow the links to the "State of the Rockies" report.