City of Manhattan set to put out 2023 community survey next week

Published: Apr. 14, 2023 at 5:15 PM CDT
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MANHATTAN, Kan. (WIBW) - The City of Manhattan is announcing the release of its 2023 Community Survey. The community survey will be sent to a sample of more than 11,000 households during the week of April 17-21.

The Community Survey has been conducted in 2015, 2017, and 2019. In the past, City staff and elected officials have been eager consumers of the data and used results in various ways to guide policies and practices. Survey topics cover overall satisfaction with quality of life, City services such as parks and recreation and public works, and support for future growth and projects.

”We’ve used pasted survey results many times, it’s led to a lot of initiatives, the street maintenance sales tax was something that came from one of our past community surveys as well as the parks and recreation one. We’ve used it to highlight the need for stormwater improvements and many other projects in the community so the feedback we take this year is going to be passed along to the city commission. They’ll be able to use that to move a lot of projects forward that we know the community wants to see,” said Assistant City Manager Jared Wasinger.

The City has worked with Dr. Josie Schafer, currently the director of the University of Nebraska at Omaha’s Center for Public Affairs Research, who was a professor at Kansas State University when the City conducted its first surveys in 2015 and 2017. Dr. Schafer and her team work to ensure the research design and methods for the survey are rigorous and provide a valid assessment of the opinion of the residents of Manhattan, Kansas, to guide City officials.

Every year of the survey, efforts to conduct broad outreach — and ensure a large sample of Manhattan residents respond — have increased.

Postcards will be sent to 5,000 randomly selected households in neighborhoods across the city. Look for a salmon-colored postcard in your mailbox around the end of April. New this year is a QR code on the postcard, to provide quicker access to the survey. In addition, emails will be sent on April 17 to 6,914 additional households within city limits who have opted into receiving their water bill through email, asking them to participate in the survey. Respondents will have until mid-May to complete the survey.

Results will be presented to the Manhattan City Commission later this summer.