The Boone County Upward Mobility Team released data Thursday that outlines key priorities the Columbia and Boone County communities want to be addressed.

The Boone Indicators Dashboard gives the public insight into the data that drives the team’s decision-making process.

The data and priority areas will inform the team as it continues its next steps with planning efforts.

Megan Bania from the Boone County Community Services Department hopes to start the planning process in November, wrapping up in the spring. Funding from the Urban Institute expires in June 2022.

Data from the dashboard shows improvement in child poverty rates over the past decade in Boone County and Columbia, and these rates are lower compared to Missouri as a whole. Median income has also improved, increasing by more than $5,000 in the past decade.

However, racial income inequality is still pervasive. The median income for Black households is about half of the income for white households, the data shows.

“This data also shows the interconnectedness of limited upward mobility and really shows how folks are doing in a disaggregated way,” Bania said.

The team is funded by a $125,000 grant from the Urban Institute awarded to Boone County in March. Boone is one of eight counties in the country that were awarded the grant aimed at promoting social and economic mobility.

Three key driver areas were identified through an event with 40 community members in August. Those priorities are strong and healthy families, opportunities to learn and earn, and supportive communities.

  • Fred Anklam manages city and county government reporters. He can be reached at anklamf@missouri.edu or in the newsroom at 573-882-5720.

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