Resident input drives "Taking Charge" process
Mayor Chris Beutler today announced a new citizen satisfaction survey will be conducted to get the public's evaluation of City services as part of his continuing "Taking Charge"initiative. A scientific phone survey of about 600 randomly selected residents is schedule to begin the first week of December. That will be followed by an online survey on the City Web site, lincoln.ne.gov. The City also will invite private and non-profit sector representatives to participate in a series of "City Stat" meetings to review data compiled on City performance.
The Mayor said the efforts are the next steps in the City's implementation of outcome-based budgeting, a process that began in February 2008 (timeline attached). He said residents have played an important role in helping the City prioritize its services. Mayor Beutler wants citizens to continue that role and encourages residents to complete the survey if called or fill out the online version.
We are becoming a more focused, professional and performance-based organization through our 'Taking Charge' process," Mayor Beutler said. "We have tied City programming directly to what we want to accomplish, rather than what we spent last year. The process also has been successful in increasing resident awareness on City revenues and expenditures.
The City is again partnering with the University of Nebraska Public Policy Center, which also helped with the PRIORITY LINCOLN project and earlier "Taking Charge" efforts. The citizen satisfaction survey will address a broad range of City services, including public safety, roads, health and sustainability. Mayor Beutler said the survey will provide the City with data it is not able to obtain from other sources.
Participants in the City Stat meetings will review City service data that are available. "City Stat meetings are occurring all over the country and are helping municipalities make choices based on need rather than politics," Beutler said. "The information from these meetings will help us set a strategic plan for the 2010-2011 budget year, a plan that helps City Hall be more flexible and responsive to the needs of the community. Focusing on performance and measurable results will help City Hall squeeze more value out of every City tax dollar."