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Longboat Key finalizing questions for third annual citizen survey

The survey gives owners an opportunity to provide feedback, and express their opinions on services and policy issues.

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  • | 3:08 p.m. December 15, 2021
  • Longboat Key
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The town of Longboat Key is in the process of finalizing the questions it plans to ask residents in the third annual citizen satisfaction survey.

A memo written by Longboat Key Support Services Director Carolyn Brown states the online survey is expected to start on Jan. 10 and last for several weeks. The Town Commission is expected to hear a final report about the 2022 survey in April.

“The results from the last couple of years have been totally outstanding,” Brown said.

Nearly 99% of the households that completed last year’s survey described the overall quality of life on the island as either “excellent” or “good.” Of them, 69.4% chose “excellent,” which is an increase from 57% in the 2020 survey.

The town had 1,524 households respond to last year’s survey after mailing out 8,320 invitations. In 2020, the town had 597 surveys completed after sending out 8,741 invitations. 

“We went up quite a bit over the year, and so my goal, of course, is to get more people involved this year,” Brown said.

Longboat Key has again hired the John Scott Dailey Florida Institute of Government at the University of South Florida to conduct the survey.

The town provides each household with a unique code to complete the online survey. The Florida Institute of Government makes sure there aren’t any bogus submissions or duplicates.

The 2022 survey is expected to have several changes:

  • The size of the text will be enlarged for the code and website link within the first-class letter mailed from the town
  • The policy questions will be updated
  • Open-ended answers will be included in the survey, especially after each category of questions
  • The survey will contain about 30 baseline questions

Commissioners suggested having open-ended questions for many of the policy-level questions. Town staff will work with USF’s Dr. Stephen Neely on the specific wording of each question.

The survey will ask residents about road construction and traffic, green initiatives, electric vehicles and public transportation.

During Monday’s Town Commission workshop, District 5 Commissioner Maureen Merrigan asked why the town did not plan to include policy-level questions about the proposed Town Center in the 2022 survey.

“I know (Neely) has cautioned us every time we talk to him about your policy questions,” Town Manager Tom Harmer said. “Don’t keep repeating them and that you should have a different level each year.

“Take that information because (survey respondents) want you to know that you’re doing something with what they said last year, and you shouldn’t have to keep asking the same questions.”

Mayor Ken Schneier suggested the town ask questions about the various activities at the Town Center site.

The survey is conducted for several reasons, including:

  • Assess community needs or desires
  • Guide to long-range planning/capital needs
  • Guide to short-term planning
  • Access communication with citizens
  • Evaluate community services
  • Determine policy support


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