Survey gives most councillors low marks

Local researcher finds community satisfaction with councillors low.

A performance review of Abbotsford mayor and councillors has been conducted by an independent, local researcher.

The survey, devised by Sherril Guthrie, of The Guthrie Consultants Group Inc., asked respondents to mark the mayor and councillors on a variety of criteria, including financial management, service delivery to taxpayers, problem-solving, communications and transparency, and leadership and initiative.

The system ranked performance between one and five, with one as “fails to meet expectations” and five as “exceeds expectations.” Coun. Henry Braun ranked highest, with an overall mark of 4.1. The next highest score was Mayor Bruce Banman at 2.6, while the rest of council ranked at 2.5 and below.

Results were compiled from 125 residents, who represented 20 per cent of those approached for the study.

The research noted a challenge in conducting the survey to be the “fear factor” in Abbotsford.

The report claims a number of residents and businesses were afraid to complete a performance review of the mayor and council and felt the need for anonymity.

Guthrie acknowledged that because it was the first of its kind, there was no established methodology or proven approach for the research.