Council ranks above average in community survey

Published on 09 July 2024

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West Wimmera Shire Council has ranked well above the state average in this year’s Community Satisfaction Survey.

The annual survey was conducted by JWS Research on behalf of Local Government Victoria.

Residents were asked a series of questions about West Wimmera Shire Council, relating to seven core measures: overall performance, community consultation, lobbying, making community decisions, sealed local roads, customer service, and overall council direction.

The Council’s overall performance index score was 59, which was above the average score for small rural councils (53) and the state-wide average (54).

The top-performing areas for the Council were the appearance of public areas, elderly support services, family support services, and waste management.

Council Chief Executive Officer David Bezuidenhout said that while it was an excellent result for West Wimmera, there was still work to be done.

“We are pleased with the fact that our overall performance has been well above other small rural councils and the state average; however, that will not stop us from trying to improve in all areas, especially our roads,” he said.

“Our advocacy plan includes the improvement of roads managed by VicRoads, and we are pushing this very hard in our monthly meetings with the department.”

“We will continue to do the best for our community, and these results reflect that we are on the right track.”

Council’s lowest-performing areas were unsealed roads, slashing and weed control, and sealed local roads.

Mr. Bezuidenhout said roads were a big focus of the Council’s recently adopted 2024-25 budget.

"Improving the condition of our roads and roadside maintenance is essential,” he said.

“We knew this was an area of concern for residents; therefore, we have allocated extra money in the budget for roads.”

Council’s highest rating of the core measures was once again customer service, which returned a result of 73 index points.

"Exceptional customer service remains a cornerstone of our operations,” Mr. Bezuidenhout said.

“We are proud that our community recognises and values the hard work of our dedicated staff in this area."

In the past 12 months, about 57 percent of West Wimmera residents have had contact with the Council. Out of these residents, 70 percent rated their interaction as ‘very good’ or ‘good’.

Overall, the Council’s performance received the same score as it did last year.

The Council’s direction over the past year is perceived to be stable, with 69% of respondents indicating that it has stayed the same, while 16% believe it has improved, and 13% feel it has deteriorated.

A total of 400 interviews were completed across a range of demographic groups for the survey.

This sample size reflects the Australian Bureau of Statistics demographic indicators for the West Wimmera Local Government Authority region and is regarded as statistically valid to represent overall community views. 


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