2012 City budget survey results released

About 40 percent of Juneau residents say the city and borough should cut services before raising taxes and fees. But 30 percent say they’d be willing to pay higher taxes or user fees.

The CBJ-sponsored budget survey was released Wednesday night to the Assembly Finance Committee. Conducted in mid-January by research firm McDowell Group, it shows that more than a fifth of respondents favor a combination of revenue increases and reduced services.

The city is facing an estimated $4.8 million shortfall in the next fiscal year, and almost a $2.9 million deficit in FY 2014.

The Assembly says residents’ input is important as they tackle the budget over the next few months.

If the city considers tax increases, 63 percent of respondents say they would support a new seasonal sales tax.

Finance Committee chairwoman Karen Crane says that surprised her.

“Money’s tight for everybody and to me it just says they appreciate the services that are out there and want to keep them,” Crane says.

If the city decides to cut the budget, respondents say they would target Community Development and City Administration.

The 2012 CBJ Budget Survey was conducted by telephone between Jan. 12 and 16. McDowell Group completed 407 surveys of Juneau residents selected randomly. The data has a margin of error of +/- 4.9 percent at the 95 percent confidence level.

Crane says the information from the survey will be an important tool for the Assembly as members makes the final decisions on the budget.

Click here for the survey.

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