We obtained a copy of the Strategic Planning Community Survey Summary from the Communications Manager, Lisa LaPlante and wanted to share those results with you. Also included in this was the City Employee Survey Summary results.
(This survey was conducted entirely online from September 10th-30th, 2018 and was created by Management Partners.)
We have a complete download of the full 30-page document for you HERE for those who are interested, but we’ve got some of the highlights for you to read now. The survey was broken down into four parts:
- Overall Perception of the City
- Priority Programs and Services
- Boulder City Vision of the Future
- Demographics of the respondents
City employees were given a very similar survey, and we will share the results from both groups.
Overall Perception of the City of Boulder City
Well, this is the meat of the matter, wouldn’t you say? In 2018, 57% of folks who took the survey felt that Boulder City is headed in the right direction. However unfortunately, that is a drop of over 18% from 2012, when 76% of residents surveyed felt the City was headed in the right direction.
The question that both city government, as well as us citizens maybe need to ask ourselves, is why? Is this related to economic conditions? Crime? Schools or opportunities for our youth? Or what’s happening at City Hall itself? It’s worth pondering for certain. Remember, the question itself isn’t a black and white statistic – it’s a perception – a feeling we have about our community.
Also of note was the question rating the Overall Quality of Life in Boulder City.
Again we do see a drop in the numbers from 2012 to 2018 going from Excellent to Good. Not surprisingly, there is also a drop in that same question when residents were asked to predict that 5 years into the future. (If you’re feeling not super great about things now, it stands to reason you’re also going to project that into the future…)
Ranking of Boulder City Programs and Services
This section was basically a mirror of what had been answered back in 2012, with the top five priorities remaining unchanged. Residents want the City’s priorities to be:
- Provide responsible management of city finances
- Manage reliable water, sanitary sewer and electrical services
- Provide police protection services
- Provide fire protection services
- Provide emergency medical services (ambulances, paramedics)
**One note, there were two new questions added this year:
- Promote growth and development
- Provide affordable housing
Both ended up at the absolute bottom of the list.
For those who took the survey, they know they were asked to give just 3 words only that “describe their vision for the future of Boulder City”. Below is a word cloud showing the responses from 290 who answered this question on the survey.
City Employee Results
We’re now going to skip ahead to another key section, which are the responses from the City Employees. They were asked each of the same three key perceptual questions about the direction of the city and the quality of life in Boulder City.
“The majority of employees (91.3%) responded that Boulder City is heading in the right direction. This is a difference of 37 percentage points compared with the community survey respondents.”
After seeing this we wondered, what is the reason for what seems to be a disconnect between the perceptions of the general public and the employees who work at the City?
When asked, City Manager, Al Noyola said, “There have been a lot of changes in leadership at City Hall over the past year, and I suspect that many residents may be concerned about the changes, thus selecting a less optimistic position about the future of Boulder City. The results of the employee survey show nine out of ten employees feel that we are going in the right direction: these are the people who are entrenched in the services, operations and programs we offer. I sense that a year from now, once people have had a chance to see the work and dedication of City staff take shape, the outcome will be different. We will do our best to change that data in the coming months and make sure we are dedicated to the values and ideals of this great community.”
It’s important to note too, that when the City Employees were asked about both the Program Priorities and also their Vision Words, that their answers overall were extremely similar values to the residents on those same questions.
Respondent Open Comments
Both the residents and the employees were allowed to then have a completely open text area for whatever comments they wanted to share. If you download the complete document you’ll see that is an extensive list, covering the last 11 pages of the report. It’s worth a read, and we’ve tried to pull some highlights for you below:
“Responsible growth is needed beyond the current no growth policy.”
“Boulder City doesn’t need to add population.” “Keep Boulder City small. Stop building!” “Enforcement of growth ordinance is no. 1 priority.”
“At current status, it’s difficult to support the home prices with current city amenities. I hope Boulder City will be preserved for its quaintness, community feel. Perhaps incentives to clean up blocks, refurbish homes, etc. would instill some pride in our older areas. Some growth is good, stagnation is problematic.”
“We are a bedroom community to Henderson and Las Vegas, so our growth should be focused on tourism with premiere restaurants, hotels, hiking, biking, OHV trails, sporting events, concerts and such.”
“It is important that a strategic plan is developed to enhance our town, providing an attractive place to live and do business. It is important that the entry to our Village is updated and we attract new business. Our safe community must continue to be the kind of location that people love to visit and live in.”
“We should be focusing on preserving our historic buildings.”
“We have so much that is good but can be made stronger with some more creativity and unity between the government and the business community working together. I’d like to see our leaders have more courage to invest in ideas that can grow the economy while preserving what makes this town special. Together I think we can figure it out.”