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Published: 11/28/2007

Waterville basks in honor for raising children for less

BY CARL RYAN
BLADE STAFF WRITER
Waterville Mayor Chuck Peyton says any recognition for the village as a great place to live is welcome. Waterville Mayor Chuck Peyton says any recognition for the village as a great place to live is welcome.
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About the same time Toledo was named the third "most-liveable community" in the world for a city its size, Waterville was collecting some honors of its own in a national magazine.

Business Week ranked the village ninth in a list it published of 50 "Great Places to Raise Your Kids - for Less."

Champagne corks didn't pop at the Waterville Village Council meeting Monday night, but there was a low-key celebration: a cake was cut and enjoyed by all.

"Any recognition like this regarding the village can only be good," Mayor Chuck Peyton said afterward. "Obviously, we feel the same way about our community and are very happy about it."

Word of Waterville's high ranking hasn't exactly spread like wildfire. The staff of the chamber of commerce knew nothing of it.

The Business Week compilation was put together by OnBoard LLC, a New York real estate research firm that maintains a statistical data base on more than 25,000 communities.

To arrive at the rankings, OnBoard used five criteria: school test scores (Waterville ranked 14th), cost of living (35th), recreational and cultural activities (22nd), the number of schools (25th), and the risk of crime (eighth).

In the overall rankings, Waterville finished just ahead of Hopewell, Tenn., and just behind Lackland, Texas. In first place was Groesbeck, Ohio, an unincorporated community of 7,200 near Cincinnati.

Groesbeck didn't finish first in any of the five categories but was cited as "a community that provides a good measure of all the things a child needs to grow and prosper."

The other 49 communities on the list didn't rate a mention in the main story, but were included in a sidebar that contained some U.S. Census statistics such as Waterville's population of 4,828 and its median household income of $60,000.

Peter Goldey, an OnBoard employee who worked on the project for Business Week, said he used only the five "data points" in the interest of keeping the rankings simple and comprehensible.

"The list is objective from the standpoint that it is based on statistical data," he explained. "But there are a variety of other things that would be relevant to people. For instance, we had nothing about availability of affordable day care, or health care, or air quality. Obviously, there has to be a limit."

Contact Carl Ryan at:

carlryan@theblade.com

or 419-206-0356.



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