PHOENIX (Feb. 16, 2011) - A recent statewide poll shows Arizonans overwhelmingly trust local elected officials to use taxpayer money in the most effective manner, and they consider their mayors and council members the most fiscally responsible among all layers of government.
The survey was done by veteran Tucson pollster Margaret Kenski, who has worked with U.S. Sen. Jon Kyl and dozens of candidates and statewide issues over the years. It revealed that:
• By a 2-1 margin, Arizona voters are more confident that cities and towns do the best job among all levels of government in Arizona when it comes to balancing their budgets.
• A strong majority, more than 65 percent, supports protecting the state's longtime voter-approved shared revenue system that guarantees 15 percent of state income taxes are shared with Arizona cities and towns.
• And an overwhelming majority of voters ranked city services like police, fire and emergency protection, as well as maintaining streets and roads as critical.
• Cities and towns are seen as the economic engine which generate revenue, create jobs and maintain quality of life across Arizona.
"This poll confirms what we already know very well: local governments are the closest to the people, they provide essential and cost-effective services, and are most responsive to their residents," said Tucson Mayor Bob Walkup, President of the League of Arizona Cities of Towns, which commissioned the poll.
Mesa Mayor Scott Smith, a member of the League's Executive Committee said, "Cities and towns play a vital role in recruiting and retaining high-paying companies that create jobs. We must protect the vital services that local governments provide, which not only enhance a community's quality of life but improve its economic prospects."
The poll sampled 500 high-efficacy Arizona voters and had a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percent. It was conducted from Jan. 4-13, 2011.
About the League:
The League of Arizona Cities and Towns is a voluntary association of all the 91 incorporated cities and towns in the state of Arizona. It provides policy and legislative advocacy, information and inquiry services, along with publications and educational programs to strengthen the quality and efficiency of municipal government. It was founded in 1937 to serve the interests of cities and towns and to preserve the principles of home rule and local determination. For more information, visit www.azleague.org.