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Albemarle County 2004 Citizen Survey. October 6, 2004. Authors. Thomas M. Guterbock Director Anna MacIntosh Research Analyst Katherine Draughon Research Consultant. Survey Goals. Determine residents’ opinions about quality of life in Albemarle County

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Albemarle County 2004 Citizen Survey

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Albemarle county 2004 citizen survey

Albemarle County 2004 Citizen Survey

October 6, 2004



Thomas M. Guterbock


Anna MacIntosh

Research Analyst

Katherine Draughon

Research Consultant

Survey goals

Survey Goals

  • Determine residents’ opinions about quality of life in Albemarle County

  • Assess residents’ satisfaction with County’s efforts to achieve its Strategic Planning goals

  • Determine residents’ level of satisfaction with County services

  • Measure opinion about the way in which the County is managing growth

  • Measure change on key indicators

Survey features

Survey Features

  • N of 707

  • Margin of error +/- 3.7%

  • Some questions comparable to 1994 and 2002 surveys

  • Field Period: June 2004

More features

More Features

  • RDD (random digit dialing)

  • Respondent selection within household

  • Balanced cross-section of County population, with post-weighting of sample

  • CATI (computer-assisted telephone interviewing)

  • Solid interviewer training

Quality of life in albemarle

Quality of Life in Albemarle

Quality of life rating rate albemarle as a place to live

Quality of Life Rating“Rate Albemarle as a place to live”

On a 10 point scale

On a 10-point Scale…

  • The mean rating is 7.96

  • Seventy-one percent gave the county an “8” or better

  • Sixteen percent gave the county a “10”

  • Twelve percent rated the county “6” or lower

Quality of life

Quality of Life

  • Not significantly different from 1994 or 2002

High ratings come from

High Ratings Come From…

  • Women

  • Those residents who have lived in Albemarle longer and older residents

  • Homemakers, students, or retired residents

  • Those residents with high incomes

  • Homeowners and those who live in single family homes

  • Those who reported themselves as living “out in the country” and those living in the rural areas in the southern & western parts of the County

Satisfaction with efforts to achieve strategic plan goals

Satisfaction with Efforts to Achieve Strategic Plan Goals

Questions drawn from county s four strategic directions

Questions drawn from County’s four strategic directions:

  • providing high quality educational opportunities for Albemarle County citizens of all ages;

  • protecting the County’s natural, scenic, and historic resources;

  • enhancing the quality of life for all Albemarle County citizens; and

  • providing effective and efficient County services to the public in a courteous and equitable manner.

Most satisfied with

Most satisfied with…

  • Efforts to make the County a safe and healthy community (94%)

  • Efforts to create learning opportunities for all ages (93%)

  • Efforts to provide effective, responsive, and courteous service to customers (90.8%)

Least satisfied with

Least Satisfied with…

  • Efforts to promote the development of affordable places to live (48.1%)

  • Efforts to protect and preserve the County’s rural character (67.6%)

  • Efforts to provide needed infrastructure (68.6%)

    . . . See page 18 of report for full list.

Views of government spending

Views of Government Spending

What should albemarle do about taxes and services

What Should Albemarle Do About Taxes and Services?

Satisfaction with value for tax dollar

Satisfaction With Value for Tax Dollar

Percent satisfied: 80.4%

Satisfaction with services

Satisfaction With Services

Overall satisfaction with county services

Overall Satisfaction with County Services

Percent Satisfied: 90.6%

Overall satisfaction

Overall Satisfaction

  • Not significantly different from 2002

  • Significantly greater than 1994

Of the 27 satisfaction items in the survey

Of the 27 Satisfaction Items in the Survey…

  • 22 had satisfaction levels of 60% or better

  • 16 items had satisfaction levels of 75% or better

Satisfaction was highest for

Satisfaction was highest for…

  • Fire protection95.9%

  • Library services95.0%

  • Emergency rescue services94.3%

  • Safety in business areas92.6%

  • Police protection92.4%

Satisfaction was lowest for

Satisfaction was lowest for…

  • Ease of getting around by public transportation45.8%

  • Level of recycling services54.2%

  • Safety for walkers and bicyclists55.3%

  • Efforts to manage growth56.4%

  • Supporting adequate housing56.5%

Satisfaction with quality of education

Satisfaction with Quality of Education

  • 85% in 2004

    • Not significantly different from 2002

  • 92.2% of those with children in schools were satisfied

In general

In General…

  • Residents were most satisfied with public safety items.

  • Items related to growth management had lower satisfaction ratings.

Changes from 2002

Changes from 2002

  • No significant increases

  • Significant decreases in 9 items

What went down

What Went Down…

  • Efforts to manage growth

  • Ease of getting around by car

  • Ease of getting around by public transportation

  • Efforts to protect natural resources and the environment

  • Efforts to preserve open space

  • Safety for walkers and bicyclists

And also down

And Also Down…

  • Keeping citizens informed about programs and services

  • Emergency rescue services

  • Efforts to support adequate housing

Satisfaction with contact with the county

Satisfaction with Contact with the County

Contact with county

Contact with County

  • During the past 12 months, 45.7% of respondents contacted the County government

  • Most frequently contacted departments were:

    • Finance

    • Police

    • Building Code/Zoning Services

Satisfaction with contact

Satisfaction with Contact

  • 81.5% were satisfied with the helpfulness of County employees

  • 84.9% agreed that the length of time that they had to wait for service was within reason

  • 83.5% were satisfied overall with their experience contacting the County.

Planning and growth

Planning and Growth

Support for development areas

Support for Development Areas

Percent Favoring: 69.9%

Support for development areas1

Support for Development Areas

Support for development areas by type of area

Support for Development Areasby type of Area

How can we attract people to live in urban areas

How Can we Attract People to Live in Urban Areas?

We asked:

“Please tell me how important each service is for attracting people to live in the urban areas rather than the rural areas within the County.”

  • Very important

  • Somewhat important

  • Not very important

How can we attract people to live in urban areas1

How Can we Attract People to Live in Urban Areas?

Most important:

  • Public utilities

  • Faster emergency response times

  • A variety of housing types

How can we attract people to live in urban areas2

How Can we Attract People to Live in Urban Areas?

Least important:

  • Having a mix of commercial, residential, and/or office uses

  • Having bikeways

  • Having neighborhood or corner stores

    Substantial variation by subgroup

Shopping outside of county

Shopping Outside of County

Almost half (46.5%) had traveled outside of Albemarle County for the primary purpose of shopping in the past month.

Most Frequently Visited Destinations:

  • Richmond Area

  • Staunton/Waynesboro

  • Northern Virginia

Most Frequently

Purchased Items:

  • Clothing

  • Groceries

  • Housewares



The survey said

The Survey Said…

  • Residents are very satisfied with the quality of life in Albemarle County

  • Ratings of most County services remain high

  • There are some significant decreases from the 2002 survey, especially in growth-related service areas

  • Residents are concerned about issues related to growth and development

Albemarle county 2004 citizen survey

Overall Satisfaction with County Services

Percent Satisfied: 90.6%

Albemarle county 2004 citizen survey1

Albemarle County2004 Citizen Survey

October 6, 2004

Albemarle county 2004 citizen survey

For further information please contact:

Thomas M. Guterbock



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