Ballarat residents have a positive view of living and raising a family in Ballarat and are optimistic about the direction in which the City is heading, according to an independent survey commissioned by Council.
Council’s overall performance was rated at 70.9. Of the survey respondents who contacted Council over the past 12 months, there was a high level of satisfaction with the customer service they received, with a significant increase on the 2018 ratings from 69.8 to 76.
The survey was conducted across all Wards in the Ballarat municipality in February and March this year, to gain the community’s perceptions of life in Ballarat and the performance of Council in delivering services to the community.
Overall, the respondents registered positive views of living in the State’s third largest regional city, citing good healthcare, a selection of parks and open spaces; learning and development opportunities for all ages; recreational facilities and our arts and cultural activities among the many positives.
High levels of satisfaction (85+ out of 100) were evident for festivals and events, arts and culture, parks and gardens, and the City’s maternal child health services.
White Night and the Ballarat Begonia Festival, two of the City’s flagship events, had a high awareness rating, while the majority of the city’s major projects were perceived to have been successful with the highest ratings for the Sebastopol Library Redevelopment, Girrabanya Children’s Centre, and Ballarat Sports and Events Centre.
Improved Infrastructure was perceived as Council’s main priority, including improvements to public transport and parking.
The annual survey gives Council an important insight into community perceptions on a Ward byWward basis.
Council’s overall performance of 70.9 showed no significant differences between perceptions in any wards, or compared to the result obtained in 2018 (72.0)
The City acknowledged that large projects such as the Civic Hall re-development, which rated highly for awareness but less for perceptions of success, was a huge undertaking that came under scrutiny from the Ballarat community.
Ballarat Mayor, Cr Samantha McIntosh thanked residents who took part in the survey, “This a very positive result for our Council, particularly in regard to our customer service.”
“Obviously there are areas that we need to work on, and we will use this feedback to continually improve on our performance,” she said.
Footnote: Satisfaction results have been compared (where possible) with other Victorian regional centres as reported in the Local Government Community Satisfaction Survey 2017 State-Wide Research Report coordinated by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning on behalf of Victorian Councils. Regional councils included in the 2017 survey were: Greater Bendigo, Greater Geelong, Greater Shepparton, Horsham, Latrobe, Mildura, Wangaratta, Warrnambool and Wodonga