More that 250 residents shared their views on the state of the township in a survey conducted this past month by Galloway's Democratic Club.
"We were looking for input on the most important issues facing Galloway," said club secretary Stephanie Sanchez."Respondents had a lot to share."
The survey was mailed to registered Democrats and available to all at the Galloway Democratic Club's website.
"Though we do not claim the survey meets the requirement for a random sample of voters, anyone looking at the results would probably say Democrats are pretty much like Independents, Libertarians, even Republicans, when it comes to local issues," said club member Rick Goldberg. "The concerns should be familiar to all residents.
Respondents selected rising property taxes, improving roads and traffic, and improving commercial development as the "most important issues facing Galloway Township." Similar concerns were evident throughout the survey. Asked to list things "that need improving" respondents regularly mentioned taxes, empty storefronts and houses, road, and sidewalks and bike safety.
In a specific question about roads in the township, approximately 75% of respondents rated their general condition as "fair" or "poor." When asked about their own (neighborhood) street, the rating were higher with about half saying it was "good."
Asked what they "liked best about Galloway," respondents most often selected "location, schools, appearance and neighborhoods." Many gave details explaining their selection, listing, for example, "proximity to the shore," "the Forsythe Refuge" and "the quiet."
Asked if they though they were receiving "quality local service" in return for property taxes paid, by a more than 4 to 1 margin the response was "no." When asked, however, to rate specific services the response was more positive. In particular the police department received high marks. Code enforcement did least well with many sharing concerns about abandoned houses and poorly cared for properties.
Asked to list additional township service which should be provided, the most frequent request- written in by about half of respondents- was for trash service. Many pointed our trash services are provided in most neighboring communities.
The idea for a survey came from Democratic council candidates Jim Gorman, Mary Crawford, Walead Abdrabouh and Frank Santo. "If we're going to help move Galloway to a better place for everyone we thought the first step was to listen to the community," said council candidate Frank Santo. "We will be discussion the survey's findings with residents over the next few weeks."
A summary of the survey results will be posted at the Galloway Township Democratic Club website.