Most content with council

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Timaru residents want their district council to resolve complaints and issues more quickly, an annual satisfaction survey shows.
But almost 80% of survey respondents gave the council’s performance an overall tick of approval.
About 400 residents were contacted by telephone to assess satisfaction over services, facilities and other council activities, and to identify opportunities for improvement.
An executive summary of the 80-page document showed 77% of residents were either satisfied or very satisfied.
About one in five residents were interacting with the council annually to make inquiries, lodge complaints or raise issues.
Overall satisfaction with how the council handled the inquiry was at 74%.
But the length of time to resolve the matter ‘‘was not rated highly, and so this represents an opportunity for improvement’’.
Also identified, but not as a key priority, was an indication that residents would value improvements to the effectiveness of stormwater systems and public toilets.
‘‘Similarly, improvement to urban roads and on-road cycle lanes would have value,’’ the report said.
‘‘Most residents are satisfied with communications that they receive from council. However, about half of residents indicated that they are not particularly satisfied with the extent that they have opportunity to influence decision-making.
‘‘This potentially represents an opportunity for council to demonstrate how residents can become involved.’’
Timaru district councillor and policy and development committee chairwoman Tracy Tierney said the 77% mark was at the higher end of the scale in terms of comparisons with other district councils.
‘‘To be fair, we have performed solidly. We have focused [the] last two years on customer service as the core driver of governance.
‘‘Management has a core group who focus on customer service and I think the report affirmed it is working, because our overall results are high.’’
She did acknowledge there was still room for improvement.