Interesting Points in Regional Survey

15 04 2009

I have a few interesting things to point out in The Hampton Roads Center for Civic Engagement’s Batten Surveys. These surveys aimed to find out where our region’s leadership stood on regional issues. The first somewhat alarming result was from the youth leader category. This category was made up of young people ages 17-22 who were considered youth leaders; most have started, organized, or were in charge of organization in their communities or schools. This is what I find rather frightening:

Does your local government invite citizen input?

Does your local government invite citizen input?

To me, this is frightening. We are in a time when there are a large number of issues that need to be resolved. Many of these issues have been caused by our current or former government officials. Young people are the ones that will have to solve these problems. Many young people already have solutions or suggestions in mind. If only they could find somebody that would listen. A large majority of older people almost immediately write off the comments of young people almost entirely on their age. For some reason there is a large misconception that young people cannot possibly have an idea that has not been heard already because older people have more experience. Older people need to give young people a chance. Most of us have excellent ideas. Now would be a great time for older people to listen to young people and guide them instead of putting them down.

Regardless, I’ll move on to the next issue I have with the Regional Survey. There was one particular question of great interest: What are the most important regional issues in Hampton Roads? The result? The top three issues across all groups are Transportation, Regionalism, and the economy, in that order.

Most Important Hampton Roads Regional Issues

Most Important Hampton Roads Regional Issues

While this in-and-of-itself is very interesting, showing that a very large group of people in Hampton Roads have Regionalism on their mind, there is an even more interesting result. This is the breakdown of people that responded to this question:

Top 3 Issues Borken Down by Interviewee Groups

Top 3 Issues Broken Down by Interviewee Groups

Note that among government officials, Transportation and the economy is put before regionalism. Appointed officials recognize that, while taking a back seat to transportation and the economy, regionalism is important to Hampton Roads’ future. Elected officials, on the other hand, did not mention regionalism. In my opinion, the ‘others’ group, made up of other various community leaders, was a closer representation to the majority of Hampton Roads residents.

We need to find these elected officials and vote them out of office. Our officials need to recognize that regionalism is important to the future of Hampton Roads. A Regional Hampton Roads would have more power to compete nationally and internationally for outside investment, both public and private. You think New York City would look like it does today if each borough competed against the other for everything?

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2 responses

15 04 2009
t1ewis

IMO i think that a lot of the leaders have become VERY comfortable and relaxed in the skin called Dylan Rule *cough* HAMPTON*cough*

seriously though u can blame all of them cuz they cities that have a lot more pull in the area (obtaining jobs and new developments) only look out for themselves and don’t try to include other cities at least to help with they’re economy.

15 04 2009
t1ewis

imma stop posting when i’m tired lol

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