Southern Grampians Shire Council’s efforts to improve the way it engages community has been reflected in the most recent community satisfaction survey, performing significantly higher in the category than the State average for Consultation and Engagement.
Council’s score of 59 in ‘Consultation and Engagement’ was up from 57 in 2019 – exceeding the current state average of 55. The rating of Council’s overall performance also continued to improve, up 3 points from 53 in 2019 to 56 in 2020, surpassing the Large Rural average of 55.
Southern Grampians Shire Council Mayor, Cr Chris Sharples said it validated the work Council has been putting into community consultation over the last 24 months – where there has been a strong focus.
“It’s really pleasing to see that the work Council has been putting into actively communicating with local residents and genuine engagement with them on projects and services, has had a real impact within our community,” Cr Sharples said.
“Overall the results show that Council is moving in the right direction – so thank you to our staff for your hard work. This year has had, and will continue to have some challenges where we been forced to find new and innovative ways to continue to deliver services – these results reflect that continuance of high service delivery”.
Lobbying and Community Decisions saw small improvements and Overall Council direction and Customer Service measured a small decrease. However, Council has defied the group and State-wide trends of significant declines in community perceptions since 2019.
“There are areas where we would like to see some growth and improvement such as the sealed local roads measure which is unfortunately still sitting below the Large Rural and State average – but as a positive step, this figure has improved up from 41 in 2019 to 43 in 2020,” said Cr Sharples.
“Thank you to all residents who took part in this year’s survey – your responses form part of data that Council uses to reflect and assess our services and their delivery over the last 12 months,” said Cr Sharples.
“We hope that we can make a significant improvement again in 2021.”
Held annually, the Local Government Community Satisfaction Survey is undertaken by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning and provides Council with insight into the local community.
The survey covers councils’ overall performance with benchmarking against State-wide and council group results, community consultation and engagement, advocacy and lobbying on behalf of the community, customer service, local infrastructure, facilities and overall council direction. The survey results are available here.