Sarasota County Residents Trust Local Government

Todays News


A quality of life survey shows the vast majority of Sarasota County citizens maintaining trust in local officials.

“There’s robust trust in government,” said Joshua Scacco, a professor with the Florida Institute of Government at the University of South Florida. “People in general are happy with the services they receive.”

Indeed, when it comes to Sarasota County government, 61 percent of residents surveyed trusted government officials to do what was right most of the time or almost always. The same percentage of residents felt that level of trust in their city government as well. By comparison, 37 percent of people trusted county government only sometimes or never, and 34 percent responded negatively about city government.

That serves as solid support compared to state or federal government. Only 43 percent gave high marks as far as trusting Washington while 56 percent gave negative opinions. Tallahassee fared slightly better, with 51 percent expressing trust most or all of the time, and 48 percent saying the never or only sometimes trusted state government.

Beyond elected officials, 95 percent of residents say they were somewhat or very satisfied with government services provided in Sarasota County though only 10 percent said they had interfaced with the county over the past year.

There are more people in the county who want to see a reprioritization as far as county spending. And the community showed some consensus on challenges facing the region. About 20 percent of residents consider new development the greatest challenge facing the region, followed by traffic and congestion at 9 percent. When asked where the greatest traffic problems lie, 28 percent pointed to U.S. 41, with another 10 percent pointing to Interstate-75.

Notably, many Sarasota County residents mistakenly feel they live within a city. Some 64 percent of residents who responded to the USF survey live in unincorporated Sarasota County, though 70 percent of respondents believed they were city residents.


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