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County Presents Results from City/County Resident Survey

Residents Have Positive Perception of Durham County

Post Date:02/10/2017


County Presents Results from City/County Resident Survey

Residents Have Positive Perception of Durham County


Durham, NC – Learning what residents think about quality of living and accessibility to services offered by local government is important to gaining a pulse on the community for Durham City and County Governments. At the recent Durham Board of County Commissioners Worksession, held on February 6, 2017, staff presented findings from the 2016 City-County Resident Survey.


According to County Manager Wendell Davis, “this survey enabled us to collaborate with the City of Durham and Durham Public Schools to objectively assess citizen resident satisfaction and to help determine priorities for the community.”


2015 was the first time Durham County Government conducted such a comprehensive survey to objectively assess citizen satisfaction with the delivery of services, set a baseline for future surveys, and help determine priorities for the community and to compare the performance with other large communities across the United States. This year’s survey, completed by the ETC Institute by mail, online and phone, revealed that residents have a positive perception of the County. In fact, 61% of survey participants said they were “very satisfied,” or “satisfied.”  Other highlights include:


  • Quality of Life: 75% indicated they were “very satisfied” or “satisfied” with the overall quality of life in their neighborhood.
  • Feelings of Safety: 83% were either “very satisfied” or “satisfied” when rating their overall feeling of while walking alone in their neighborhood during the day.
  • Satisfaction with City and County Services (i.e. Fire, EMS, Emergency Management): For 12 of the 24 major categories of City and County services that were rated, 50% or more of residents who had an opinion were “very satisfied” or “satisfied.”


“Residents continue to agree that information is accessible, services meet their expectations and financial management is prudent.”  


As Durham County charts a path toward the future, residents surveyed reveal what they believe should be high priorities for the County in next two years.  They priorities include:

  • Public schools
  • Effectiveness of communication with the public
  • Services of Durham County Dept. of Social Services
  • Sheriff protection


Overall medium priorities for City and County include:

  • Bicycle facilities
  • Pedestrian Facilities
  • Public Transit System
  • Effectives of Communication
  • Durham County Department of Social Services
  • Sheriff Protection
  • Tax Administration Services
  • Water/Sewer Utilities


The survey revealed that residents are pleased with life in Durham and outcomes show that satisfaction rates are higher overall in comparison to similar sized communities around the nation. The ETC Institute performed a benchmarking analysis comparing results to communities with a population of more than 250,000. The benchmarking comparisons show that Durham County rates higher than other large communities as it relates to quality of services provided. When honing in on customer service, Durham County rates much higher than other large communities. 


To view the complete survey detailing residents’ attitudes towards a wide range of services, visit where results from the 2015 survey are also located. Residents that want to learn more about the City’s perscpective on the survey, should note that the City of Durham plans to present its findings to City Council on Friday, March 3rd