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“NO” on taxes, “NO” on multi-purpose center, Nelson’s survey says

City Councilman Don Nelson has released results from a survey asking for citizen input on range of topics related to Council 2011 goals.|Mason City City Councilman Don Nelson sent a survey to citizens asking for their feedback on a range of topics related to City Council goals and priorities for 2011.

Nelson sent the results and comments from that survey to to share with the public.

The data from the survey was parsed and tabulated by Ralph Wolf, a former Mason City Clinic Administrator who also currently sits on the Mason City Public Library Board. Nelson says Wolf “has a reputation for community involvement.” Nelson told that he personally did not look at the survey results. Instead, he let Mr. Wolf interpret the data for him in an impartial way. “I didn’t look at the results much, if at all. I din’t want my personal view to taint the survey results. I knew Mr. Wolf would interpret the survey results in a fair way.”

Here is what Wolf said about the survey results:

“1. I was pleased with the number of citizens who took time to respond to your (survey) questions. This left me with the impression that citizens are interested and trying to keep informed as to the City Government activities and want city government to listen to their concerns.”

“2. I was surprised at the lack of positive comments about City Government spending and future City Tax increases. I would suggest that the annual City Budget meetings be televised to help educate the citizens and allow for citizen feedback.”

“3. I was also surprised at the less than positive comments about the proposed Multi-purpose Center and left with the impression that citizens feel that this is not a good time for City Government to take on the potential financial burden of a new Multi-purpose Center.”

Among the citizen comments from Nelson’s survey:

“Stop and control the spending of taxpayers dollars and hold down cost.”

“Keep property taxes flat.”

“Hold the line on taxes and new projects. Let’s digest what we’ve done.”

“Stop funding outside organizations.”

“Do not get us into more tax indebtedness and especially not to cave into special interests.”

“City water fees for large businesses are closing stores, or putting some in dire straits.”

“Taxes and utility rates can’t continue at the rate they are going.”

“Population has decreased, the tax base has decreased, the budget needs to be adjusted accordingly.”

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