Saanich receives input from citizens and businesses with survey results

March 7, 2023

News release
For immediate release

Saanich, BC – Eighty-nine per cent of residents rate the quality of life in the District of Saanich as good or very good according to the recent citizen and business survey results.

BC Stats conducted the statistically valid surveys on behalf of Saanich from October 24 to November 27, 2022. Saanich heard from 316 citizens, 127 businesses and 350 online survey participants.

“Overall, our survey results demonstrate that Saanich residents feel positive about the work we do and the services we provide,” said Chief Administrative Officer Brent Reems. “It’s also crucial for us to receive input on areas where we can improve, so we appreciate the residents and businesses who took the time to provide their feedback. Council will consider the survey results as they head into their upcoming budget deliberations and as they develop their new strategic plan.”

Saanich has conducted citizen and business surveys following the start of each new Council term since 2003. The survey results guide Council’s decision making and help set targets for service delivery. The results are also taken into consideration during Council’s strategic planning for the four-year term.

Respondents from the citizen survey said affordability (housing and tax increases) and transportation and infrastructure (e.g., traffic, bikes lanes, etc.) are the most important issues currently facing Saanich. They also expressed less satisfaction with the following service areas: policies that encourage affordable housing; land use planning; building inspections and permits; infrastructure (e.g., sidewalks, lighting, and road maintenance); and bylaw enforcement. Businesses also chose affordability (including housing, utilities, and rental properties for businesses) and transportation and infrastructure as the as the biggest challenges Saanich will face in the next five years.

Municipal norms

Saanich also conducted a statistically valid normative benchmarking telephone survey with 171 citizens in comparator communities. These residents were asked a subset of the questions asked to Saanich residents in the citizen survey. Example comparisons include:

  • Saanich residents were more likely to consider their community’s quality of life as good (89%) than residents of the comparator communities (83%).
  • Saanich residents were more likely to agree that their community’s government was doing a good job (58%) than residents of the comparator communities (52%).
  • Saanich residents (45%) were less likely to agree they receive good value for the taxes they pay than residents of the comparator communities (49%).
  • Saanich residents (59%) were less likely to feel safe while using the roads than residents of the comparator communities (73%).

Quick facts:

  • 70% of businesses rate Saanich as a good place to operate a business.
  • 58% of citizens and 50% of businesses believe Saanich is doing a good job.
  • 66% of citizens and 47% of businesses prefer to maintain current service levels with a managed tax and/or user fee increase (inflationary increase).
  • 45% of citizens and 34% of businesses agree they receive good value for their municipal taxes.
  • 57% of businesses agree Saanich’s rules and regulations for businesses are easy to understand.
  • 50% of citizens and 43% of businesses agree that Saanich welcomes citizen/business involvement.
  • Services with the highest satisfaction in the citizen survey are fire services; parks, playgrounds, fields, and trails; recreation facilities; and curbside collection (garbage, organics, leaf); police services; and recreational programs and services.

Learn more:

The 2022 citizen and business survey report as well as past survey results are available at  BC Stats presented the survey results at the March 6 Council meeting.

BC Stats is the provincial government’s leader on statistical and economic research, information and analysis.

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Media contact:
Megan Catalano
Communications Manager