Community Satisfaction Survey results improve for two years running

Posted Friday 12 June, 11:14am

Ararat Rural City Council has improved its community satisfaction survey results for the second year in a row with the organisation’s CEO acknowledging it still has work to do.

CEO Dr Tim Harrison said it was encouraging to see the community’s views on Council have improved as it meant the organisation was still heading in the right direction.

Dr Harrison said it was pleasing to note that Ararat Rural City’s position within a group of similar-sized rural Councils, and against state-wide averages, has also improved.

“This is recognition for the work we have done over the past 12 months but we won’t become complacent – we’ll continue to work hard to improve our performance,” he said.

“The survey results are heartening, and Councillors, Council staff and I are committed to further improving our performance on all levels. We’ll continue working hard on that for as long as we need to.”

Dr Harrison said the Council’s score for overall performance had improved from 49% in 2019 to 60% this year. This is above the state-wide average of 58% and the small rural council average of 56%.

Other 2020 survey results include:

  • Local streets and footpaths – 62% up from 55% in 2019 (state average 58%).
  • Overall council direction – 63% up from 55% in 2019 (state average 51%).
  • Appearance of public areas – 73% up from 69 in 2019 (state average 72%).
  • Elderly support services – 68% up from 65% in 2019 (state average 68%).
  • Customer service – 70% up from 69% in 2019 (state average 70%).
  • Arts centres and libraries – 78% up from 76% in 2019 (state average 74%).
  • Recreational facilities – 71% up from 68% in 2019 (state average 70%).
  • Community and cultural – 63% the same as in 2019 (state average 68%).

Dr Harrison said the organisational changes that were implemented last year coupled with the 2020/2021 Budget will continue to focus Council’s attention and resources on issues of great importance to the community such as local roads and advocacy.

“I would like to acknowledge the support of our Councillors in the work we’re doing, and the efforts of Council staff, which have contributed to this improvement,” he said.

The annual state-wide community satisfaction survey is carried out by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning with at least 400 telephone interviews with randomly selected residents carried out across the municipality. 

The survey rates Victorian councils on issues such as overall performance, community consultation and engagement, advocacy, customer service and overall direction.