South Waikato councillors have found public opinion in the toilet over the state of the district's dunnies.
But despite an overall happy rating, one councillor clearly thought the issue worth looking into, even suggesting surveyors placed outside the local conveniences to catch punters' opinion on the way out.
A recent council meeting saw chambers head into disarray over the 2014 Residents Satisfaction Survey, despite it showing an 89 per cent satisfaction rate with the council's performance.
But it was not the numbers councillors were worried about.
The community and assets committee meeting came to a standstill as councillors argued over reports that only 45 per cent of those surveyed were satisfied with the public toilets.
"This is wrong," Mayor Neil Sinclair said.
"I have major concerns of how the figures are interpreted," he said.
The results presented to councillors failed to show what percentage were dissatisfied and what percentage "don't know".
Sinclair pointed out that it seemed as if 55 per cent were dissatisfied when in fact only 15 per cent were.
He said the public would see it that way, too, if the same document was released, portraying a predominantly negative view of the council. Even Deputy Mayor Jenny Shattock's attempt to control the situation failed.
But Shattock called the comments "fair".
Councillor Marin Glucina chimed in and commented on the survey itself.
"There's nothing wrong with the council doing their micro survey," he said. But if the council wanted to obtain specific information, a direct survey should be done.
"One of the ones we could do is stand outside the public toilets and ask exiting patrons whether they are satisfied or not."
One of the positives to emerge from the triennial survey was a 99 per cent satisfaction rate concerning the Sports and Events Centre.
The survey of the district's facilities and services was conducted earlier this year.
400 people were interviewed.
Council overall performance.
Satisfied: 89 per cent.
Dissatisfied: 9 per cent.
Don't Know: 2 per cent
Satisfied: 45 per cent.
Dissatisfied: 15 per cent.
Don't Know: 40 per cent
Value for rates.
Satisfied: 70 per cent.
Dissatisfied: 30 per cent
Sports and Events Centre.
Satisfied: 99 per cent.
Dissatisfied: 1 per cent.
Satisfied: 60 per cent.
Dissatisfied: 6 per cent.
Don't Know: 34 per cent
- Waikato Times
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