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Napier City Council poll result completely useless

Napier City Council poll results are completely useless.

Napier Public Health Action Group Inc.

"A recently released Napier City Council opinion poll is fatally flawed" said Napier Public Health Action Group spokesman Dave Taggart.

The Napier City Council-commissioned National Research Bureau poll was meant to gauge public opinion on whether the City Council should lift its caveat on the sale of Napier hospital.

The published results of the NRB telephone survey said that 45% support the Council lifting the caveat and 40% oppose it.

Actually, the poll shows 44% of Napier people wanted the caveat kept and only 37% wanted it lifted.

167 residents supported lifting the caveat; 199 residents opposed lifting the caveat. The NRB report's stated percentages contradict the actual numbers for and against.

"The only figure in the entire report that is even remotely accurate is the total number of people polled", said Mr Taggart. "Not only has the NBR transposed the actual numbers of respondents for and against the caveat being lifted, none of the published percentages add up.

"This shows that no one, not NRB, not the Napier City Council administrators, not the media who publicised the results, have checked the results. This is more than human error; it is basic incompetence at every level. Working out percentages is basic high-school mathematics; it's not complicated.

"All media who publicised these false percentages should now publicly correct them and give the real figures the same prominence they gave the false ones", Mr Taggart said.

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"If I was a City Councillor, I would be demanding that NRB not be paid for this useless work, that the Council never use NRB again and that whoever released the report to the media be severely reprimanded. I would also expect the Council publicly disown the report, given its gross inaccuracies.

"The Napier Public Health Action Group also considers the actual wording of the telephone poll was highly misleading and misrepresented the facts about the reason for the caveat's existence, but the numerical errors alone render the poll results useless.

"I suggest that any other Council or business that has used NRB's services have their reports checked immediately. The potential damage done by using such flawed information could be horrendous", Mr Taggart said.

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