In addition to obtaining news from sources you trust, in order to educate yourself before you vote for candidates and propositions, why not look at a less mediated view of the world and the issues that matter to you?
There are a range of tools that provide local, objective data for regions nationally, and these tools can help you understand how your own community is doing on the core issues that elected officials will play an important role in shaping in the years ahead.
Below are some data tools that I recommend.
Know of other sources to add to this compilation? Please add a comment below.
Detailed data and summary scores are available across a range of topics, including housing, transportation, the environment, health, neighborhood (e.g., safety and proximity to destinations), engagement (e.g., Internet access, voting rate), and opportunity (e.g., high school graduation, income inequality). In developing this index, AARP not only factors in indicators of community well being, but also policies that are supportive of each topic.
Full disclosure: Hillcrest Advisory does work on the Livability Index.
Data are available for all cities with populations of more than 50,000 (750 cities in total). Compare your city to others on health outcomes, behaviors (e.g., drinking, physical activity), income and poverty, crime, housing, education, environment, and health care.
County-level data on health-related measures, including premature death, quality of life, healthy behaviors (e.g., nutrition, drugs and alcohol use), clinical care, social/economic factors (e.g., crime, high school graduation), and the physical environment (e.g., pollution, housing problems).
Find county-level scores for health, equity, education, economic, issues, housing, food and nutrition, the environment, public safety, community vitality (e.g., voter participation, home ownership, migration), and infrastructure (e.g., commuting time, walkability)
Equity factors into a wide-range of community-level outcomes, and the National Equity Atlas provides a Racial Equity Index for a number of cities nationally with breakdowns for overall equity, inclusion, and prosperity.