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Posted on: 12 July, 2018

More consultation is key in building on Council’s community satisfaction rating

Singleton residents’ satisfaction with Council’s performance is unchanged since 2016, with an overall rating of 3.28 out of 5 in the Community Satisfaction Survey conducted in April this year.

The survey showed 83% of the 503 respondents, selected at random to reflect a statistically valid sample of the population, were at least “somewhat satisfied” with Singleton Council’s performance across all service areas.

The mean score of 3.28 is above the regional average of 3.22.

The results showed the most important Council services or facilities were:

  1. Informing the community of Council decisions
  2. Health and hygiene of local restaurants and takeaways
  3. Consulting the community
  4. Management of Council’s finances
  5. Advocating on behalf of the community for improved services

Council’s best performing areas were provision of library services, water supply, Gym and Swim facilities, maintenance of sporting fields and recycling collection.

In addition, 47% of residents said what they love about Singleton was the safe and friendly feeling and its central location, and 55% said reducing traffic congestion and generating local employment were the biggest impacts for the community in the next 10 years.

Council engaged independent company Micromex Research to conduct the survey and collate the results.

General Manager Jason Linnane said Council was already taking action to address the areas for improvement that emerged from the survey results, which included Council responsiveness to community needs and consulting the community.

“The community told us the most important thing we do is telling them about Council decisions, and that’s the number one area people said we could improve on,” he said.

“People also told us they want to know more about the management of Council’s finances, and about the way Council itself is managed.

“That’s why people are receiving the first edition of Council’s new quarterly magazine, Singleton Edit, in their letterboxes this week with stories about new initiatives and major projects, an update on Council’s advocacy work over the past few months and a snapshot of Council’s financial position under the recently adopted Operational Plan for 2018/2019.

“But that’s not all. There are already a number of channels available for people to talk to us at Council, but we’re working on other projects to develop an even greater connection between the work we do and the people we do it for, including an improved website and an online community portal to facilitate ongoing conversations and feedback.”

Mr Linnane said he was not surprised Council’s advocacy role rated highly in the most important Council services or facilities, particularly in light of issues around traffic and ongoing conversations about the proposed Singleton bypass that dominated community concerns.

“We know that advocating to other levels of government for the infrastructure we need to address issues in Singleton, such as traffic congestion, is a major priority for people in our community and they look to Council to be doing that,” he said.

“The Mayor of Singleton, Cr Sue Moore and I are working closely with the Member for Upper Hunter Michael Johnsen and actively meeting with the right people in the State Government to ensure Singleton is at the forefront of their decision-making, particularly leading into next year’s election.”

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