Monmouth County has 600,000+ residents and thousands more commute daily to Monmouth County for work and pleasure. Monmouth County’s unique assets include: fifty miles of ocean and bay beaches; revolutionary historic sites; outstanding educational institutions, arts organizations and medical centers; nationally recognized parks and golf courses; culturally vibrant communities, and easy access to New York and Philadelphia, a unique quality of life is what attracts people to Monmouth County. However, in recent years, the county has experienced rising unemployment coupled with a significant increase in the cost of living:
- From April 2007 to January 2012, the unemployment rate in Monmouth County went from 3.5% to 9.2%.
- Job growth in the private sector as a whole has been negative since 2007, and this downward trend affected every sector, including construction, manufacturing, trade, transportation, utilities, financials, professional services, education, health services, leisure and hospitality. Employment and innovation “giants” such as Bell Labs, Avaya, Fort Monmouth, Prudential, no longer exist in the county.
- Jobs are gone while cost of living continues to rise. Today, Monmouth County’s cost of living is 43% higher than the national average.
Creative Monmouth came together in 2012 to develop ideas for tackling these urgent issues and leveraging the county’s many assets.