Community Satisfaction Survey – 2018 Results

Overall Satisfaction with County Services Remains Strong   

  • Overall satisfaction with quality of County services is 88 percent.
  • This is 38 percentage points above the national average.
  • Satisfaction improved or stayed the same in 10 of the 15 areas rated in both 2015 and 2018.
  • Satisfaction is the same in most parts of Arlington.

Quality of Life Remains Significantly Above National Average

  • Satisfaction with overall quality of life in Arlington is 86 percent.
  • This is 11 percentage points above the national average.

Other Survey Highlights

  • Survey showed significant improvement in:
    •  Maintenance of County streets (+13 percentage points)
    •  Effectiveness of communications with the public (+7 percentage points)
    •  Customer service from County employees (+6 percentage points)
  • Street maintenance and management of traffic flow remain important areas to improve
  • Residents feel safe in Arlington County, with 98 percent feeling safe in their neighborhood during the day and 91 percent having an overall feeling of safety in the County.
  • Satisfaction was high with fire, emergency medical and ambulance services (93 percent) as well as police services (85 percent). Residents identified the quality of police services as a top priority.
  • When asked about budget issues, respondents indicated they are most willing to pay an increase in taxes to maintain services for public safetyschoolstransportation and public works.

Overview & Full Report of Results

Survey Background and Methodology

The 2018 survey is the fifth comprehensive survey to assess resident satisfaction with County services. Arlington County conducted its first comprehensive satisfaction survey in 2004. The County will use the survey results as an additional tool to measure its performance and enable more effective management of community services. Hundreds of cities and counties around the nation use surveys such as this to assess their performance.

The survey employed the following methodology:

  • Seven-page survey mailed to random sample of Arlington households in August 2018
  • Survey offered in English and Spanish 
  • A total of 1,610 residents completed the survey 
  • Overall results have a 95-percent level of confidence and a margin of error of +/- 2.4 percent
  • Demographics of the sample matched most recent Census estimates with regard to gender, ethnicity and age
  • Home addresses of survey respondents geocoded to ensure representation across the County and enable GIS mapping

About ETC Institute

ETC Institute is a nationally known firm and market leader in conducting opinion research for government organizations. ETC has done research for more than 500 cities and counties in 48 states. Through its proprietary DirectionFinder®, a national benchmarking survey initiative, ETC compared Arlington’s survey results to those of other similar communities with populations over 100,000 across the United States.