Why Cumberland Valley The answer to the question Why Cumberland Valley is a combination of strategic location, mix of industries, a thriving economy and a high quality of life. Cumberland County was ranked the number one county to live in and is also the fastest growing county in the state. View more info below and find a list of accolades for the area here. LOCATION Cumberland Valley’s (Cumberland County and the surrounding region) proximity to major east coast markets and regional seaports, and access to multiple air, rail and highway systems accelerates connections between businesses, suppliers and customers. The County, located within the Cumberland Valley region of South Central Pennsylvania, has connections via Interstate 81, I-83, I-76 and US 11/15. Cumberland Valley is also within a two-to-three hour drive of every major city on the Northeast Corridor including New York City, Philadelphia, Washington D.C. and Baltimore. The close proximity to the state capital of Harrisburg offers many nearby amenities including the transportation hubs of the Harrisburg International Airport and Amtrak. The county consists of 33 townships and boroughs. Together these municipalities combine the best of rural landscapes with an abundance of business opportunities and a collection of outdoor recreation, military history, renowned events, and an eclectic mix of shopping and dining. THE ECONOMY Cumberland Valley, which encompasses Cumberland County and the surrounding area, thrives from the approximately 6,000 businesses that employ about 116,000 people. According to the PA Center for Workforce Information & Analysis’ December 2016 Report, Cumberland County’s unemployment rate is one of the lowest in the state – 4.1% percent versus a statewide rate of 5.7%. This positive employment climate is partly due to major employers in the government, healthcare, retail, transportation and warehousing industries that are located, and in many cases headquartered, within Cumberland Valley. According to Moody’s Analytics, in 2013 Cumberland County experienced a 3.5% increase in Gross Domestic Output (GDP), and -0.3pps decrease in unemployment rate, a 1.3% increase in job growth rate, and a staggering 7% increase in median home prices growth rate. On average, it is 75% more expensive to live in a city like New York compared to living in Cumberland Valley. Also, according to the PA Department of Labor & Industry, the cost of living in the south central PA region is almost 5% below the national average. AAA BOND RATING In 2014, Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services assigned its “AAA” long-term rating, with a stable outlook, to Cumberland County, PA. The AAA rating reflects the following factors for the county: Strong economy, diverse employment base that continues to expand Very strong budgetary flexibility Adequate budgetary performance Very strong cash levels to cover both debt service and expenditures Very strong management with strong financial policies that are likely sustainable Very strong debt and contingent liabilities position and low overall debt TOP INDUSTRIES The county’s top five industries by dollar value and share of county economic output for 2013 were as follows: Insurance services at $1.4 billion or 10.1%; real estate at $1.4 billion or 9.7%, business services at $1.2 billion or 8.7%; management and consulting at $758.3 million or 5.4%; and federal government at $678.8 million or 4.8%. The total nominal GDP was $14.2 billion and average county wage was $44,900. Based on the four major indicators of GDP, unemployment, employment, and median home prices, Cumberland County had fully recovered from the recession in all four indicators by 2012.