Mayor Stephanie M. Burke
February 25, 2016
Constituent Services Subcommittee Report
Mayor Stephanie M. Burke established the Constituent Services Subcommittee as part of her Transition Team after the 2015 election. The purpose of the Subcommittee was to gather information from citizens about services received from municipal government and collect feedback on how those services could be improved. The Subcommittee met multiple times, conducted four community meetings, and created and distributed a non-scientific survey asking citizens how they get information from the City, what their experiences have been receiving city services, and suggestions for making those experiences better.
Approximately 150 citizens attended the community meetings, and 344 citizens responded to the survey. The attendees and respondents represented the diversity of Medford in age, education, employment categories, as well as the neighborhoods across the city.
This report, survey results, and citizen feedback provides information on multiple topics and focuses on whether city departments offer courteous and appropriate assistance to citizens. Additionally, the results identify how citizens most frequently learn about city business and their preferred communication methods.
This report serves to inform the Mayor about the most pressing concerns of the citizens to help improve communications and services from the City.
Meeting Feedback/Survey Results
The Constituent Services Subcommittee held four community meetings strategically timed and located to optimize citizen participation. The results of the meetings showed that residents want more transparency, better communication to and from city departments, and improved code enforcement.
The subcommittee also conducted a first of its kind citywide survey that asked citizens for their opinions of City Hall and allowed for comments. The results are attached to this report and the Subcommittee recommends that the community’s comments be shared with each city department.
The survey and meeting results and feedback provide a baseline snapshot of the current concerns of citizens in Medford. This information will help the new administration with decision-making, as well as prioritizing the issues that are most important to citizens. It is the Subcommittee’s hope that future versions of the survey will show improvement of the citizens’ primary opinions and concerns.
The survey showed that citizens generally have a positive experience when visiting Medford City Hall. However, the experience citizens receive by telephone did not score as high. Also, the amount of information and variety of services available on the City’s website, as well as the user experience of the website, should be improved to meet the needs of citizens.
The Constituent Services Subcommittee recommends that the Mayor consider:
- Deploying a City Hall voicemail system and implementing a policy of having citizens’ phone calls returned within two business days.
- Creating an email address for each department, if not for every employee, as well as implementing a policy of returning citizen’s email within a timely manner.
- Overhauling the City’s website to be user-friendly, responsive for mobile devices, and offer a single, authoritative source of information, as well as provide city services that are currently done in person at City Hall. Public meetings that are recorded should also be made available online.
- Developing a comprehensive communication strategy and social media presence to reach as many citizens as possible.
- Adding staff to appropriately manage code enforcement and address pressing issues.
- Implementing an online- and telephone-based constituent reporting service for non-emergency issues. This service would publicly show the progress and resolution of the issues.
- Creating and publicly posting an organizational chart of all city departments and employees. This chart should also have accompanying contact information, including telephone numbers and email addresses.
- Doing more to actively engage the City’s minority and non-English speaking population.
- Assessing and improving traffic patterns and pedestrian safety across the city.
Click here to review results online or view below as PDFView Fullscreen