Take 5 minutes to fill in the new Jefferson County survey—here’s why it matters

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Stop + give Jefferson County five minutes of your time. Photo via Jefferson County on Facebook

There’s a new Jefferson County survey—the first of its kind for county residents—and they need your input. According to Cal Markert, County Manager, “one of the county’s main priorities is adding long-term value to our customers.” Fill out the survey and help ensure your tax dollars are spent on the things that matter most to you. Here’s why it matters.

1. The Jefferson County survey will help measure progress against the county’s strategic plan

Kelly Hotel
Downtown Birmingham as seen from the Kelly Hotel. Photo via Nathan Watson for Bham Now

In November 2020, Jefferson County released its five-year strategic plan

The survey will provide a benchmark for how the County is doing in certain areas and will give them something to compare to in the future. 

Key goals:

  • Promote a citizen-focused culture that strives for accountability and consistent, efficient delivery of service. 
  • Create quality infrastructure that is efficient and serves the community.
  • Attract, select, develop and retain our skilled and diverse workforce.
  • Build the economic stability of the county and create a culture of trust and transparency. 

How do you think Jefferson County is doing in these areas? Let them know today.

2. Keep Alabama Beautiful—mandatory garbage pickup or no?

Screen Shot 2018 10 23 at 1.47.51 PM Take 5 minutes to fill in the new Jefferson County survey—here's why it matters
Tire cleanup at Red Mountain Park. The park removed more than 4000 tons of garbage from illegal dumps in 2017. Photo via Red Mountain Park

Nobody loves trash, and we pride ourselves on our state’s natural beauty. 

That said, Jefferson County is not a mandatory garbage pickup county. Residents can decide if they want garbage pickup or not. 

Mandatory garbage pickup would give the County the authority to make sure people are getting their trash picked up and to deal with some illegal dumping issues.

The survey gives us a chance to decide if we want that.

3. Jefferson County is reaching out to citizens—are they making contact?

jefferson county podcast
The Jefferson County podcast is for the people. Photo via Matthew Niblet for Bham Now.

According to Helen Hays, Public Information Officer for Jefferson County, the County has been investing in numerous ways to connect with residents. 

Part of what they want to learn in the survey is the level of awareness people have about all the resources that are available, including: 

Now they want to know if residents know they have those things and if they’re engaging with them. 

4. Give feedback on whatever’s on your mind through the Jefferson County survey

Loving their new podcast, Podcast for the People? Wondering when a road issue’s going to be taken care of? Concerned about illegal dumping? 

“The county is a different animal. We’re different than cities. There’s a lot of legislative authority we do not have—we’re focused on roads, bridges, right of ways. And we have a sewer. There are some things we can’t do, but we want to try to find out how we’re doing and how we can improve our service.”

Cal Markert, County Manager, Jefferson County, Alabama

5. Jefferson County has $127M of American Rescue Plan money to spend

bike lane
Temporary bike lane created as part of the Urban tactical popup. Photo by Zyp Bikeshare

While there are limitations on what this money can be spent on, several of the survey questions are designed to help the County identify priorities.

“The survey lists several potentially eligible areas of where projects may be identified that may utilize the Federal funds. While there are many considerations that must be taken into account when spending these funds, the survey gives citizens an opportunity to have some input on what is most important to them.”

Helen Hays, Public Information Officer, Jefferson County

Make your voice heard—take the Jefferson County citizens survey today.

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Sharron Swain
Writer, Interviewer + Adventurer | Telling stories to make a difference
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