HORSHAM Rural City Council’s community satisfaction rating has dropped to one of its lowest levels ever, but remains higher than average.
The council was involved in the 2017 Local Government Community Satisfaction Survey.
The survey had a number of performance measures, including council’s advocacy, the condition of roads, council’s ability to make community decisions, and its customer service.
Council’s overall performance was 60, which was one point above the state government and three points above other regional centres.
Corporate services officer Tony Schneider said council’s performance had declined on all measured compared with its results last year.
“There was a significant decline in the past year on the measures of customer service, overall council direction and consultation and engagement,” he said.
“Performance index scores on all measures are at their lowest levels to date.
“Despite these declines, performance on consultation, engagement and making decisions significantly exceed group average for regional centres.”
Council’s biggest drops were in customer service and overall council direction – both down five points from last year.
Sixty per cent of people surveyed said they would prefer to see service cuts than rate rises.
Sixty-six per cent said they would like to receive a council newsletter.
Cr David Grimble said while council had some improvements to make, councillors shouldn't get too hung up on the results.
He said these reports needed to be taken with a grain of salt.
“We get other reports that say we are doing a top job – it’s good for keeping up with checks and balances, but I don’t lose much sleep over it,” he said.
Cr John Robinson said there was key messages in the results that council could take on board.
“Our performance last year was better than this year, but we compare well across other regional centres,” he said.
Cr Mark Radford said a council newsletter was something to look at.
“The last time we produced a newsletter was in 2006, but this report tells me that people want to know what’s going on with council,” he said.