The Marco Island Civic Association’s annual survey results are in and though they don’t surprise MICA’s executive director Ruth McCann, the results may be somewhat surprising news to many others.
City councilors say it is one of the only tools to gauge overall community opinion on several prominent issues.
Some of the results that stood out to McCann included the results of the spending cap question, which she said were very clear.
The survey revealed that the members want the spending cap to remain in place in the City Charter, with 85.6 percent responding that they wish to retain the spending cap as currently written.
“Even if you add up those who want to raise the cap to 5 percent, 10 percent or eliminate the cap entirely, that percentage totals just 7.8 percent,” McCann said.
The remainder of those surveyed, 6.6 percent, were undecided.
The electric municipalization survey question was new to the survey and 82.7 percent do not want the city to expend any further funds to investigate electric municipalization, another clear statement from the membership.
More than 6,000 surveys were mailed out this year and more than 2,500 completed surveys were returned.
“That is a 41 percent return, which is slightly higher than last year,” McCann reported.
This year’s survey was mailed in March with an April 1 return deadline. In past years the survey has been mailed in April or May.
About 58 percent of respondents answered the question “Do you support a public high school on Marco Island?” with the answer “no.”
McCann said that result didn’t surprise her, but said she could understand how attendees to meetings advocating the school may believe the support is higher.
Members of the Marco Island high school initiative, including Jane Watt, did not comment on the result or whether it would persuade their approach to building a Marco Island charter high school by 2011 or 2012.
“With many important issues on the horizon, the MICA Board wanted to get the opinions of the members in order to be best prepared to address the issues,” McCann said.