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Annual survey results released ahead of yearly town meeting scheduled for Feb. 8

PMG GRAPHIC: ANNA DEL SAVIO - This chart shows how Scappoose residents rated their satisfaction with various city services on the 2019 community survey. Above is the population of Scappoose in recent years, based on data from Portland State University. Between the 2018 survey and the most recent survey, which was conducted in fall 2019, satisfaction decreased with utility billing customer service, stormwater drainage and runoff, and street surface quality.The city of Scappoose has released results from its recent community survey.

The survey, which was mailed with utility bills and promoted online, asked residents how they felt about city services from community events to construction permits. On each question, respondents were asked to rank their satisfaction from "very dissatisfied" to "very satisfied."

The survey received more than 330 responses, representing less than 5% of the city's residents. According to the latest population estimates from the Portland State University Population Research Center, Scappoose has approximately 7,270 residents. A more exact number will be found this year through the 2020 census.

Over the past decade, Scappoose has seen the most growth of all cities in Columbia County. The city has grown from an estimated 6,680 residents in 2010. The growth is just under the overall state rate, but above the county's rate.

On the community survey, 81% of respondents said they were satisfied or very satisfied by Scappoose as a place to live. More than half of respondents were satisfied with Scappoose as a place to raise children and a place to retire. Less than a third of respondents were satisfied with Scappoose as a place to work, but that still showed an increase from last year.

Satisfaction with community events saw the biggest jump, from 36% in 2018 to 49% in 2019. The past year brought the revival of the Scappoose Sauerkraut Festival and the city's first annual Earth Day festival. Both events are expected to continue this year.

Roughly a quarter of respondents were satisfied with the city's street surface quality, pothole repair and other street quality issues. On Jan. 1, the city's new fuel tax went into effect. That tax on auto fuel sales was approved by voters in order to fund sidewalk and street improvements.

Some other categories received low rates of "satisfied" or "very satisfied" responses, but that doesn't necessarily indicate public disapproval: Categories like municipal court services and land development services received a majority "neutral" response. Compared to street conditions or paying utility bills, few community members interact with those services.

More survey results can be found on the City Council's Jan. 6 meeting packet online. The survey will be discussed at the annual town meeting scheduled for 9 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 8, at the Scappoose Middle School Cafeteria.


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