Video: 2020 Utah Voter Priorities

Written by: Christopher Collard

Every four years, Utah Foundation conducts a series of surveys to discover which topics are most important to Utah voters. Surveying priorities in 2020 proved to be a unique challenge. Our first series of surveys finished in March. Days later, the coronavirus pandemic shut down state economies and the next few months saw widespread protests against racism and for police reform. Due to the reshuffling of Utah voters’ priorities, Utah Foundation conducted another round of … Continued

Significant Statistics | Are Californians to Blame for Salt Lake’s Rising Housing and Rental Rates?

Written by: Christopher Collard

The Utah Foundation has released a series of Significant Statistics on the relative importance of housing affordability among Utah voters, noting the steep increases in housing prices and rental prices. Why are we seeing these increases? The Utah Foundation has looked at whether it might be due to an influx of Californians. That does not seem to be the whole answer. When looking at Utah’s larger metropolitan areas, the recent rate of people moving in … Continued

Op-Ed: Why should we care about educational attainment?

Written by: Peter Reichard

Post-secondary educational attainment matters a lot. For years, Utah Foundation has been uncovering data on challenges and successes that connect directly to post-secondary educational attainment. In fact, attainment matters so much to us that we just launched a series on the topic with a report that examines strategies that can be deployed to help boost attainment levels. What is educational attainment? In general, it is the highest level of education that a person or population … Continued

Significant Statistics | 2020 a standout year for home sale price escalation

Written by: Christopher Collard

One theory commonly floated about the current crunch is that the higher levels of remote work have allowed workers to leave higher-density cities for locations with good job opportunities and a higher quality of life – both strong points for Utah, though Utah Foundation is unaware of any data supporting the theory itself. A second factor for the housing crunch more broadly is record low interest rates. In May, the average 30-year fixed mortgage rate … Continued

Utah Thrives Podcast | The Why and How of Boosting Post-Secondary Attainment

Written by: Staff

Utah Foundation has launched a series of reports on how Utah can boost educational attainment. The first report in that series, Beating the Odds: Post-Secondary Success for Adult, First-Generation and Lower-Income Students, explores various means of promoting both student retention and completion of certificates and degrees. It focuses on subsets of students who have been less likely to attain higher levels of education and receive the socio-economic benefits of that attainment.  In this edition of Utah … Continued

Op-Ed: Has Utah found a better way to pay for roads?

Written by: Peter Reichard

About 8,000 years ago, somebody in what is now Iraq came up with the idea of taxing the public for services and infrastructure. In addition to funding armies, taxation in the ancient world went heavily toward building roads. Whether it was property taxes or some other exaction, few were particularly pleased. Tax collectors were despised in the ancient world. After these millennia, is it possible that Utah has figured out the best way for the … Continued

Significant Statistics | Priorities survey reveals divergent housing affordability concerns by age, political viewpoint, ethnicity

Written by: Christopher Collard

Utah Foundation had asked about housing prices in its 2008, 2010 and 2012 Utah Priorities Project surveys but housing had never been one of the top 10 issues. However, housing affordability was the second most important issue to Utah voters in early 2020. With the emergence of the coronavirus, concerns about housing affordability dropped to 7th – with just under one-third of Utahns ranking it in the top 5. (See Figure 1.) Interestingly, housing affordability … Continued

Utah Thrives Podcast | Connecting Teleworking and Air Quality in Utah

Written by: Peter Reichard

In April 2020, Utah Foundation released a report, Work Away from Work: The Challenges and Promise of Teleworking, on remote work. It provided an overview of the potential benefits and pitfalls of the massive experiment in teleworking prompted by the pandemic. In January 2021, Utah Foundation released a followup report, The Way Home: The Shift to Telework and its Air Quality Ramifications. The report focuses on how remote work relates to future growth, traffic and air … Continued

Op-Ed: Can the telework revolution improve traffic and air quality in Utah?

Written by: Peter Reichard

Every couple of decades, the trajectory of modern history pivots on game-changing innovations: the rise of trains, planes and automobiles; the invention of the light bulb; the birth of television; the emergence of the PC; the dawn of the internet. We are due for another pivot, and it may have arrived in the form of a remote revolution. With the lockdowns of 2020, the worldwide embrace of telehealth, e-commerce, telemeetings, online education and telework suddenly … Continued