Community Survey Results Gives San Carlos a Thumbs Up

The survey says 98 percent of the respondents rated the overall quality of life in San Carlos as excellent or good.

Results from the Community Survey conducted in the spring shows an large percentage of the San Carlos population expressed satisfaction with the way things are going around town.

Stated goals of the survey were to provide the city with a statistically reliable understanding of residents' satisfaction, priorities and concerns as they relate to services and facilities provided by the city government.

The survey attempted to identify important issues and services, measuring resident satisfaction overall as well as in specific service areas, gather opinions on topics including economic development and parking, evaluate perceptions of and experiences with the city government and determine the city's effectiveness in communicating with its residents.

True North Research interviewed over 450 residents through random digit dial (RDD) methodologies including landline and cell phone calls between March 31 and April 8.  The overall margin of error in the survey results was plus or minus 4.56 percent.

Dr. Timothy McLarney, President of True North Research, presented the results to the City Council at their meeting on June 11.

"Despite the tough economy and its impact on the City's budget in recent years, resident satisfaction in San Carlos is high," Dr. McLarney said. "When a City has results like this, it is wise to Stay the Course and to do what it takes to maintain the quality of services the City currently provides."

McLarney also said that the results of the survey show that San Carlos is one of the top cities in California when it comes to satisfaction with city services and programs.

San Carlos residents were asked a number of questions in the areas of Quality of Life, City Government and Communication.

Quality of Life
    98% rated the Overall Quality of Life in San Carlos as Excellent or Good
    89% were Satisfied with City Services
    92% felt Safe in their Neighborhood After Dark
    99% felt Safe in Commercial & Retail Areas During the Day
    89% felt Safe in Commercial & Retail Areas After Dark

City Government
    95% found the City Staff to Be Professional & Accessible
    91% found the City Staff to Be Helpful
    86% said they Trust the City of San Carlos
    82% said the City is Responsive to Residents' Needs
    71% felt the City Listens to Residents
    65% said the City Manages its Finances Well
    Top answers to One Change to Improve the City were: Not Sure/Can't Think of Anything (20%), No Changes Needed (15%), Improve Schools & Education (9%)

    83% were Satisfied with City Communication to Residents
    74% Do Not Desire Additional Information from the City
    68% Visited the City Web Site in the Last Month
    78% rated the City Web Site as Easy to Use to Find Information
    Top 5 Information Sources from the City were: Web Site (26%), Internet (24%), City Newsletters (17%), Email from the City (17%) and Flyers, Brochures & Posters (11%)
    Most Effective Information Sources: Postcards, Letters & Newsletters Mailed (84%), Email/Enotify (81%), City Web Site (80%), Postcards/Brochures at Buildings (69%)

"The results from the survey are a ringing endorsement of the work that the City Council and City Staff have done in the past two years to resolve a multi-million dollar budget deficit, the loss of Redevelopment at the hands of the State and yet still provide a level of services that is seen by our residents as among the best in the State," San Carlos City Manager Jeff Maltbie said. "This is an impressive achievement by any yardstick but there are opportunities for the City to continue improving."

McLarney highlighted four areas that the City can focus on going forward based on the survey results:

    1, Managing Traffic Congestion
    2, Promoting Economic Development
    3, Providing Police Services
    4, Improving Parks & Recreation Areas and Opportunities

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