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2015 Community Survey reveals Johnson County is moving in the right direction

Johnson County’s 2015 Community Survey reveals increases in overall satisfaction with quality of services, value of County taxes and effectiveness in communicating with residents.

“We value the feedback we receive from our residents through this survey,” said Ed Eilert, Chairman of the Johnson County Board of County Commissioners. “We strive to make Johnson County a community where residents are proud to live, work, raise their family; and enjoy and benefit from the services the county has to offer.”

The survey is conducted every other year to receive community input on services provided by Johnson County.

“The 2015 survey shows Johnson County is moving in the right direction on several fronts and is setting the standard in service delivery when compared with the rest of the country,” said Hannes Zacharias, County Manger of Johnson County. “We are grateful for the time Johnson County residents gave to this survey and we will continually work to improve our county services.” 

Ron Vine from ETC Institute presented the results of the 2015 Community Survey to the Johnson County Board of County Commissioners today. The survey is available at http://www.jocogov.org/dept/board-county-commissioners/documents-and-reports.

Overall key findings:

Satisfaction with the quality of life in Johnson County was measured at 94 percent…13 percent higher than the national average and 24 percent higher than large communities (having populations above 250,000.)

In looking at the satisfaction of service delivery, Johnson County ranks 27 percent above the national average and 38 percent higher than large communities.

Regarding the overall value of County taxes, the 2015 satisfaction rate increased 5 percent over 2013, and is up 11 percent from 2005.

When asked about the availability of arts & cultural amenities in the County, residents voiced a 66 percent satisfaction rate in 2015. That’s up from 63 percent in 2013 and 52 percent in 2011.

Satisfaction with the effectiveness of county communication increased 8 percent from 2013. Additionally, the survey revealed significant increases in residents’ familiarity will 11 of the 22 County departments and offices accessed in the survey.

Johnson County as a place to live, work and play

  • 96 percent were satisfied with Johnson County as a place to live (consistent with the 97 percent in 2013 and the 96 percent in 2011). The national rate was 83 percent. The rate for large communities was 76 percent;
  • 95 percent were satisfied with Johnson County as a place to raise children (96 percent in 2013, 94 percent in 2011). The national rate was 79 percent; large communities was 69 percent; and,
  • 87 percent were satisfied with Johnson County as a place to work (down from 90 percent in 2013, consistent with 89 percent in 2011). The national rate was 58 percent; large communities’ rating was 73 percent.

Public safety

  • 96 percent of residents feel safe in their neighborhood during the day (consistent with the 97 percent in 2013 and 95 percent in 2011). The national rate was 90 percent; large communities’ rating was 87 percent;
  • As far as feeling safe after dark, 90 percent of residents feel safe in their neighborhoods at night (92 percent in 2013 and 85 percent in 2011) The national rate was 68 percent; large communities’ rating was 52 percent;
  • Johnson County residents feel safer in their parks than prior years, and significantly safer than people in other parts of the U.S. 75 percent reported feeling safe in County parks in 2013, compared to 72 percent in 2013 and 58 percent in 2011. The national rate in 2015 is 62 percent and the large communities’ rating is 48 percent

Satisfaction with County services

The highest areas of satisfaction were with Johnson County Library (88 percent), Johnson County Park & Recreation District (87 percent), and 67 percent for both the County’s election system and Emergency Medical Services/MED-ACT.

Satisfaction with the County’s Motor Vehicle services (vehicle titling and registration) increased 17 percent over 2013.

“People may remember that in May 2012, the implementation of a new state computer system caused a period of long lines,” says Thomas Franzen, Finance Director and Treasurer, Johnson County Government. “Since that time, we have worked to improve the titling and registration processes.  We have a very hard working and customer service-oriented staff, and we are pleased to see satisfaction rates have improved.”

Other findings:

  • Parks: 84 percent of participants feel the County’s park system meets the community’s needs. 42 percent would support a property tax increase to make improvements in existing parks, while 23 percent would support a property tax to acquire more parkland.
  • Libraries: 79 percent feel the County’s library system is adequate to support the needs of residents. 40 percent said the County should build additional libraries in areas where population growth is expected, and 28 percent said they would be willing to pay more in property taxes to build new libraries.
  • Transit: More than two thirds (69 percent) of residents felt the County should increase efforts to coordinate routes and schedules with regional transit partners. Nearly half (48 percent) said the County should offer bus service in all parts of the County, and 29 percent said they would pay higher taxes to expand transit services.

Survey methodology:

ETC Institute of Olathe conducted the 2015 Johnson County Community Survey in April. This was the fifth community survey since Johnson County started surveying residents every other year in 2005. The survey involved a random sample of 3,000 Johnson County households with 1,329 completed surveys that included at least 200 responses from each of Johnson County’s six districts.