Why Are There No Ventura County Cities on MONEY Magazine's America's 100 Best Small Cities List?

The August 2010 issue of MONEY Magazine published its annual list of "100 Best Places to Live in America." I have subscribed to MONEY for years and each year my wife reviews the list and tells me 3 other places she would like to consider moving to. To which I reply:


Curious, I reviewed MONEY's 2010 list and there was not a single Ventura County city on it.

MONEY's methodology was to start out with the 746 U.S. cities with a population of 50,000 to 300,000*, remove median incomes greater than 200% or below 85% of the state median, retirement communities, large job losses and poor education scores, then rank the remaining cities based on housing affordability, education, arts/leisure, health care, safety and other factors. *This methodology eliminates fine cities like Agoura and Moorpark from consideration.

Then they whittle down the list based on economic factors and visit 30 of the cities to select the winner.

Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Camarillo and Oxnard, all cities between 50,000 and 300,000, are nowhere to be found on the list.

I looked back at MONEY's Top 100 lists going back to 2005 and only once, Simi Valley in 2006 (#35), has a Ventura County city been included on this list. Something ain't right here!

Well it should be noted that Newbury Park, albeit not officially a city (it is part of Thousand Oaks), made it to #71 on the 2005 list. But that was 5 years ago!

Why is it that cities like Piscataway, NJ, Centreville, VA, Roswell, GA and Stillwater, OK made the list but not a single city from Ventura County has made the list  going back to 2006!?

MONEY, are you reading this? Come visit Ventura County why doncha and check out what we have to offer! Yah, all right, it is still a bit pricey to live here, but we have hundreds of things to do and all sorts of local events year roundkids' activities and plenty more!

No offense, but I'm not leaving the Conejo Valley for Owensboro, KY, Gilbert, AZ, O'Fallon, MO or Millcreek, PA any time soon. I'm staying put right here in America's #1 county, Ventura County! :>

For the record though, here are the top 10 cities on the 2010 list: Eden Prairie, MN, Columbia/Ellicott City, MD, Newton, MA, Bellevue, WA, McKinney, TX, Fort Collins, CO, Overland Park, KS, Fishers, IN, Ames, IA and Rogers, AZ.