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Dunedin Residents Increasingly Satisfied With City

Dunedin Residents Increasingly Satisfied With City

Dunedin (24 June 2004) - Dunedin City residents are generally more satisfied with their City and are increasingly optimistic about their future, according to the latest Residents Opinion Survey (ROS)

Nearly three-quarters of the population think Dunedin is a more creative or innovative City while 83% of residents are proud and love to be Dunedinites, according to the survey which is conducted for the Dunedin City Council by J.D. Bell and Associates.

The survey also reveals that residents are much more satisfied with the direction of the City than they were a year ago, with 56% of people either satisfied or very satisfied with the direction, compared with 48% in the 2003 survey. In addition, more than 80% or respondents to the survey are either satisfied or very satisfied with the overall look and feel of the City, compared with 75% a year earlier.

Residents appear to be giving the City Council some credit for the improvement in ratings, with the overall performance satisfaction rating of the City Council rising to 42%, up from 38% a year earlier. The satisfaction ratings of the Mayor and Councillors (up to 40% from 39%) and satisfaction with staff (up to 40% from 39%) both improved.

City Council chief executive Jim Harland said the results are pleasing as they show an improving trend in areas that the City Council has been focussing on.

"Each year the survey helps the City Council to identify the community outcomes that residents would like us to look at, so when we see an improving trend in the survey results we know that we are delivering the sort of results that residents want from us," Mr Harland said.

"The survey also highlights some areas where there is still room for improvement, and we are already working on a number of areas where I'm confident we'll show improvement in the months and years ahead."

Among highlights in this years survey are:

* A rise in the percentage of respondents who agreed or agreed strongly that the Dunedin City Council delivers good value for its ratepayers - up to 29% from 23%. * A rise in the percentage of people satisfied with the condition of roads - up to 74% from 69% * A rise in the percentage of respondents satisfied or very satisfied with promotion of the City - up to 52% from 42%. * A rise in the percentage of respondents who agreed or agreed strongly that they had confidence in the elected councillors - up to 26% from 22% * A rise in the percentage of people satisfied or very satisfied with the City's sewerage system - up to 52% from 48%

There were several areas where satisfaction levels declined, including household rubbish collection, the availability of carparking in the central City and some town amenities such as the Otago Settlers Museum.

Mr Harland noted that the City Council had already identified areas where there is room for improvement and in many areas initiatives are already underway to improve facilities and services.

"It is our mission to work with the people of Dunedin to maintain and enhance our community and the results of this survey confirm we are on track. I believe we have come up with a variety of innovative solutions to provide cost-effective services and this latest ROS survey endorses the direction we are moving in," he said.

About the ROS Survey

The Residents Opinion Survey was carried out between March 29 and April 18 2004 and a total of 728 completed questionnaires was returned in time to be analysed.

The survey has a margin or error of + or - 3%. It is important to note that many of the services or facilities provided by the City Council are not important to all residents on a daily basis, which accounts for the high percentage of "don't knows" recorded in a survey of this type.

ENDS

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