Residents remain overall pleased with city’s progress, annual survey finds

05/19/2014 12:12 PM

05/19/2014 12:13 PM

Residents continue to give high marks to quality of living in Arlington, both for the city in general and in their individual neighborhoods, the city’s annual citizen satisfaction survey found.

Residents feel that the city is headed in the right direction and are likely to either recommend Arlington as a place to live or to continue living there, according to the study’s executive summary.

Public safety, crime level, civic participation, getting good value for the tax dollar and overall customer service of city departments also received high marks in the 2013 survey, conducted by Decision Analyst.

Areas that were notably better than last year, according to the summary, included emergency response times, code compliance and less unsightly overgrown weeds and grass.

Some scores that were high last year reverted back to their 2011 levels, the report said. But residents did express more concern about electronic bill pay, the quality of the drinking water and the speed of water and wastewater construction projects, the report said.

The survey was conducted for 20 days in February this year as opposed to the usual December.

“We always try to make sure to listen to our citizens when it comes to things they’d like to see improve,” said Kathryn Wilemon, mayor pro tem. “One thing we would really like to work on for the future is more participation.

“I’m really very proud of our emergency team and responders,” she added. “I was actually in a situation where there was an incident and I called them, and they were very quick to respond and very professional. I think that is something our chiefs continually work on and I think they are doing an excellent job, the fire and police staff and others. I had to call the chief right after that happened and let him know how grateful I was for that.”

The survey was offered online, and residents selected at random from ZIP codes across the city received postcards in the mail inviting them to participate.

“The survey information obtained tells us how well we deliver services to our residents. It is also used by the city to address potential areas in need of improvement, plan for the next fiscal year, and provide performance management data. We really appreciate the residents taking the time to provide us with this important information,” Devon Madrigal, Arlington’s senior performance analyst, said in a statement.

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