Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Marlborough resident survey shows rise in satisfaction

Marlborough District Council’s 2023 resident survey has recorded an increase in satisfaction of 66% – up from 62% last year.

The survey and report were presented at this morning’s Economic, Finance and Community Committee.

Mayor, Nadine Taylor said Council’s overall satisfaction level has been comparatively high over the last decade.

“Despite the negative impacts of extreme weather events and inflationary cost pressures, Council has fared reasonably well overall. Our satisfaction rating is ahead of the New Zealand council benchmark,” she said.

“Compared to 2022, satisfaction levels have been consistent across most services, with very high positivity in some areas, while continuing to match or out-perform national benchmarks.”

Thirty five out of 46 (76%) services rated by residents achieved satisfaction of 60% or above, with 12 services achieving 80% satisfaction or higher – a similar result to last year.

The top performing services were cemeteries (87% satisfaction); public sports grounds (86%); civil defence and emergency management (85%); libraries (85%) and drinking water (85%).

More residents (58%) believe Council provides sufficient opportunities for people to have their say compared to 2022 (48%). Satisfaction with Council’s communications rose to 74% from 67% in 2022.

There were declines in flood protection and urban stormwater.

“The lowest scores for many individual services occurred in the Marlborough Sounds, Awatere, and Western Wairau,” Mayor Taylor said.

“This might be expected as many Council services are not directly provided in these areas. Related to this is that Council’s rating system recognises this by either not charging for a service or by charging at a lower level.”

Roads scored 40%, just below the national average benchmark of 43%. Seven out of 10 negative comments for roads related to potholes and repairs, with additional concerns raised about Marlborough Sounds’ roads.

“I’m not surprised given the numerous wet weather events over the last two years year not only damaged the Sounds, Northbank, Waihopai and Awatere roads, they also impacted on the whole network, diverting resources away from Marlborough Roads’ regular maintenance activities,” Mayor Taylor said.

“Marlborough scored higher than a comparative group of councils which have also suffered recent severe weather events.”

The survey is carried out independently by SIL Research. Six hundred residents are randomly selected via telephone directories, a postal mailout and social media promotion.

Data is weighted to reflect area, gender and age group proportions as per the Census. The sample size allows a 95% confidence level, +/- 4-5% when the results are reported as totals.

For the survey year, the data was collected quarterly from September to November 2022; December 2022 to February 2023; March to April 2023 and May to July 2023.

To read the report, go to www.marlborough.govt.nz/your-council/long-term-and-annual-plans-policies-and-reports/residents-satisfaction-survey

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