2018 Citizen Survey

Dashboard Summary of Findings
Community Livability Report
Demographic Crosstabs
Geographic Crosstabs
Trends Over Time

The NCS Supplemental Online Results
The NCS Technical Appendices

Summary

Survey Says Residents Have Increased Trust for the Government in Albert Lea

In 2018, the City of Albert Lea contracted with National Research Center, Inc. to conduct The National Citizen Survey™ (The NCS™). The survey captured opinions of a representative sample selected from 1,500 residents of Albert Lea, who were mailed invitations to complete the survey. They also made available an open participation survey that was available to all residents.

According to The NCS Community Livability Report, “Overall quality of community life represents the natural ambience, services and amenities that make for an attractive community. How residents rate their overall quality of life is an indicator of the overall health of a community.” In the case of Albert Lea, about two-thirds of residents rate Albert Lea as an excellent or good place to live. The results for the survey also found that ratings for measures of the City of Albert Lea government improved since the last survey was conducted in 2015, including evaluations of the overall direction that the City is taking and the City being honest and welcoming citizen involvement.

Chad Adams, City Manager said, “the City has taken the results of past year survey responses very seriously and have established benchmarks for improvement on key municipal service areas and areas corresponding to the community’s quality of life. We were very impressed with the high response rates from the community, which provides us with further confidence in the community’s needs and desires for Albert Lea.”

Adams added, “The citizen responses from the 2018 survey clearly indicate that we have made the desired improvements we were seeking in municipal services and in the public’s support for the overall direction that our City is heading. We will continue to evaluate the results and establish new goals and benchmarks for the next several years. I sincerely applaud all of our city staff, council, and our community stakeholders for both leading and partnering to advance the quality of life in the community.”

The survey and its administration are standardized to assure high quality research methods and directly comparable results across The NCS communities. More than 350 municipalities have participated in the survey throughout the United States.

The NCS captures residents’ opinions within three pillars of a community: Community Characteristics, Governance and Participation and across eight central facets of a community, including Safety, Mobility, Natural Environment, Built Environment, Economy, Recreation and Wellness, Education and Enrichment and Community Engagement.

About The National Citizen SurveyTM (The NCSTM)
The NCS was among the first scientific surveys developed to gather resident opinion on a range of community issues, and has been used in more than 350 jurisdictions across 46 states. The NCS is the only citizen survey assessment tool endorsed by the International City/County Management Association and the National League of Cities. The NCS is a cost- effective survey of local residents and an important benchmarking tool that allows for comparison among communities. Communities using The NCS have reported that the tool improved staff performance, strengthen communications with community stakeholders, and identify clear priorities for use in goal and budget setting.

About National Research Center, Inc. (NRC)
NRC is the leader in the field of public sector research and evaluation, with clients from across the country and around the globe. The firm is comprised of a skilled team of social scientists who supports cities, counties, foundations and nonprofit organizations in using research to help communities thrive. NRC pioneered the development of The National Citizen Survey™ (NCS), and continues to offer a suite of products designed to enhance the public voice and aid local decision-making

Minnesota state law (Chapter 156 of the Session Laws of 2005) requires that "a city or county with a population of more than 15,000 must annually notify its residents of the positions and base salaries of its three highest-paid employees." For the City of Albert Lea, titles and salaries as of Jan. 1, 2019, are: City Manager, $138,375.12; Director of Public Works/City Engineer $110,780.80; and Director of Public Safety $103,646.40. Date of publication: January 23, 2019.