2007 Rural Economic and Health Vitality Policy Agenda - Full Report
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The development of the 2007 Rural Economic and Health Vitality Policy Agenda continues the process of
collaboration between the Governor's Cabinet and legislative leaders and the leaders of California's diverse
regions through the Economic Vitality Conversations (EVC) project, initiated in 2003 by the Secretary of the
Business, Transportation and Housing Agency Through this process, the State convened four statewide economic
vitality conversations, and CCRL convened twelve regional economic vitality conversations, leading in 2005 to the
State's "Framework for California's Prosperity" and recommendations for a region-based California economic action
agenda – "Innovation, Investment, Collaboration" (see http://www.calregions.org/statepolicy/vitality.html).
To address issues and opportunities focused on the State's rural regions, and to provide them with a more direct link
to state policymakers – a challenge given the lack of a specific focus in state government on rural policy issues – CCRL
initiated the Rural Economic Vitality Project, convening a statewide Rural Economic Vitality Conversation (Rural
EVC) in April 2005. The Rural EVC presented an opportunity to coalesce rural leaders around an initial shared action
agenda. It provided an overview of rural economies, based on rethinking rural assets and strategies, and resulted in a
wide range of policy action recommendations which are summarized in the report "Innovation, Entrepreneurship,
Collaboration – An Economic Action Agenda for Rural California" (July 2005).
The Rural Economic Vitality Project has led to several noteworthy outcomes and policy successes. To ensure
continued progress, during 2006 CCRL engaged in an ongoing consultation process with diverse state and regional
leaders to identify more targeted recommendations, based on emerging policy priorities and high leverage areas of
opportunity. The resulting 2007 Rural Economic and Health Vitality Policy Agenda has two core strands: that the
future prosperity and wellbeing of California is inextricably linked to that of Rural California and that equitable,
strategic investments in infrastructure – human and physical – will improve health outcomes for rural people,
communities and regions. Why is this so?