Results from the City of Sedalia's customer service survey have been tabulated. The most popular city service is trash pick-up. The report also points out that residents enjoy living in Sedalia. On the other hand, the survey also reveals that a few of the services are in need of additional resources.

During the month of May, the survey was distributed to every Sedalia household. The return rate was approximately 10%. The results generally reflect a high regard for the quality of Sedalia services. For example, in response to the question, "How do you rate the overall quality of services provided by the City," 64% of those responding indicated the city services are "excellent" to "good." 24% feel they are "fair" and 8% said "poor." 69% of the respondents believe that Sedalia is an "excellent" to "good" place in which to live. 22% rank the City as a "fair" place to live and only 6% say "poor." Added to this is that 77% of Sedalia citizens believe they were treated in a courteous manner when they last had contact with the City and 8% indicated they were not treated with courtesy.

In the case of a potential Sedalia community center, 61% of Sedalians indicate that our city needs such a facility and 25% are opposed to the idea. But, while 45% say they would financially support a community center, 36 say they would not. As is frequently the case in city surveys, police and fire services rank very high. That also is the case in Sedalia. 69% of Sedalia residents report that the police department is "excellent" to "good." 13% say "fair" while 5% say "poor". Similarly, when combining the categories of excellent, good and fair, 89% of Sedalians feel safe living here. A very nigh number of local citizens have a favorable opinion of the fire department. 74% of the respondents believe the Sedalia Fire Department is "excellent" to "good." 4% say "fair" and 2% say the fire department does a poor job.

The city service most popular with citizens is trash pick-up. An extraordinarily high number of 82% of the respondents say Sedalia's trash pick-up is "excellent" to "good." Not only is that a high rating, but when the categories of excellent and good are separated, the number of "excellent" responses outnumbered the number of “good" responses. That is the only time in the survey this occurred. 7% rate trash pick-up as "fair" while 2% say the service is "poor." Another service that generally does well with residents is Parks and Recreation. 75% of those responding say Sedalia parks are "excellent" to "good." 14% consider city parks and recreation as "fair" and 2% categorize them as "poor."

Sedalia's recent efforts to clean up the city have not gone unnoticed by citizens. Nearly 50% say the work has been "excellent" to "good" and 28% say "fair." This is a number that reflects significant progress. For example, the same survey question was asked of citizens last year. At that time, only 40% said the efforts to clean up the city were "excellent" to "good" and 22% said "fair." Other service areas that traditionally show the need for improvement are street and sidewalk maintenance. Both reflect an "excellent" to "good" rating of less than 30% each. Also, 34% of the respondents say that street and sidewalk maintenance are average. 30% say street maintenance is "poor" and 27% say sidewalk maintenance is "poor." When compared to last year's survey, street maintenance is somewhat stronger this year, but sidewa1k maintenance is about the same.

"I think you'll find that most cities will show citizen concerns for streets and sidewalks," said City Administrator Gary Edwards. "It also points out the need to look more closely at these areas during budget talks."

Interestingly, 50% of the city respondents say Sedalia's snow removal work is "'excellent" to "good" while 25% say it is "fair." 20% describe it as "poor." "These are actually pretty good numbers for a service that is difficult to please everyone," said Edwards.

Finally, services such as building permits and inspections and various other permits are not used by a large number of citizens, but among those who do use them, they are ranked very favorably. "Conclusions from the canvass will be helpful in determining local resident's perceptions of strengths and weaknesses of municipal customer services. They also are helpful in determining the future use of resources," concluded Edwards.

This news release was provided by Sedalia City Administrator Gary Edwards.

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