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Survey asks: What can we do for you, Dade City?

DADE CITY — Commissioners in Dade City are expecting the results of the city's first citizen satisfaction survey to start trickling in soon.

The survey is designed to get residents' opinions on the local government, as well as an idea of what new services are wanted.

City Manager William Poe said the survey was sent out with randomly selected water bills in January. Respondents were asked to send in the results with their February utility payments.

The survey covers questions about residents' general satisfaction with the commission and mayor. In addition, it asks whether they use the city's Web site and whether they would be open to using credit cards or an online site to pay their utility bills.

Poe said Dade City is following the example of Zephyrhills, which has partnered with the University of South Florida's master of public administration program for five years to provide citizen surveys.

Steve Spina, the city manager of Zephyrhills, said the program creates the surveys free as a way for students to gain real-world experience.

Spina said about 35 percent of people who received the survey responded last year. He sees this year's survey as a way to gauge reactions to the city's upcoming projects and issues, like whether the stretch of U.S. 301 that becomes Gall Boulevard should become one-way, which is part of a Florida Department of Transportation plan.

In Dade City, a number of survey questions focus on downtown and what recreational activities residents would like to see.

Both cities included a question on whether residents would like elections to be moved to November, to coincide with national and state elections.

Once the surveys are in, the cities will send them back to the University of South Florida students.

"They process the data," Spina said. "We don't open them; we just hand them over to the students."

Survey asks: What can we do for you, Dade City? 02/01/09 [Last modified: Sunday, February 1, 2009 5:06pm]

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