A Survey of Education Program Needs for the Florida Association of Counties County Commissioner Training Program

http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ ( Publisher's URL )
MISSING IMAGE

Material Information

Title:
A Survey of Education Program Needs for the Florida Association of Counties County Commissioner Training Program
Physical Description:
Fact sheet
Creator:
Clouser, Rodney L.
Publisher:
University of Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agriculture Sciences, EDIS
Place of Publication:
Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date:

Notes

Acquisition:
Collected for University of Florida's Institutional Repository by the UFIR Self-Submittal tool. Submitted by Melanie Mercer.
Publication Status:
Published
General Note:
"FE634"

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida Institutional Repository
Holding Location:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
All rights reserved by the submitter.
System ID:
IR00004197:00001


This item is only available as the following downloads:


Full Text

PAGE 1

FE634A Survey of Educational Program Needs for the Florida Association of Counties County Commissioner Training Program Rodney L. Clouser INTRODUCTION Florida Cooperative Extension has partnered with the Florida Association of Counties (FAC) and the Florida Counties Foundation (FCF) since 1998 in surveying Florida County Commissioners and County Administrators approximately every two years. The survey collects information regarding attendance at FAC-FCF sponsored events, willingness to pay for educational programs, worth of events and programs attended by commissioners and administrators, desired locations for educational activities and, most importantly, the type and amount of training needed by commissioners on various topics that would assist them as an elected policy maker. The results of the 2005-06 survey are presented as an executive summary that follows. In addition, for the first time the executive summary, survey questionnaire and PowerPoint presentation of results are being made available via a link for those who would like to view or print the entire document. The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) is an Equal Opportunity Institution authorized to provide research, educ ational information, and other services only to individuals and institutions that function with non-discrimination with respect to race creed, color, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, political opinions, or affiliations. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Cooperative Extension Service, University of Florida, IFAS, Florida A&M University Cooper ative Extension Program, and Boards of County Commissioners.

PAGE 2

A Survey of Educational Program Needs for the Florida Association of Counties County Commissioner Training Program Rodney L. Clouser1EXECUTIVE SUMMARY 2006 County Commissioner and County Administrator Educational Survey 1. The survey response rate was large. A total of 250 surveys or 56.3 percent of all surveys were returned. The usable survey response rate was 55.4 percent (246 total surveys). 2. Almost three of every four commissioners (73 percent) who responded to the survey had been in office eight years or less. 3. Eighty-five percent of commissioners and administrators responding to the survey were from counties with a population less than 500,000. 4. Ninety-four commissioners or 48 percent of commissioner respondents to the survey are CCC (Certified County Commissioners) graduates. 5. Seventy-six percent of CCC graduates (some have not graduated yet) indicated they were interested in some type of postgraduate CCC curriculum and 71 percent of them would prefer a policy-based postgraduate curriculum. 6. Only thirty-eight percent of respondents support use of nationally or professionally recognized speakers if it would double the registration price of CCC events. 7. Survey respondents are open to use of technology in securing a maximum of six hours of credit towards certification: 75 percent would be likely to use web-based classes, 67 percent would be likely to participate in streaming video classes, 30 percent would be likely to participate in real time distance education classes and 40 percent would be likely to participate by use of taped (DVD, VCR) classes. There was little support (17 percent) for phone conference classes coupled with computer graphics. 8. More than six in ten respondents support authorization of computer-based classes for CCC credit. 1 Professor and Extension Public Policy Specialist, University of Florida, Fl orida/IFAS Cooperative Extension, Food and Resource Economics

PAGE 3

9. The overall top-voted training topics in the policy and procedure area were growth management, land use planning and zoning, alternative revenues, economic development, strategic planning and community visioning and natural resources issues related to water and land use. The top training topics in the people and personal area were strategic thinking and planning, leadership skills, developing a policy framework, conflict resolution and listening skills. 10. When asked to rank only the three top training topics the most requested topics in the policy and procedure area were growth management, budget and financial management, alternative revenues, land use planning and zoning and strategic planning and community visioning. The most requested training topics in the people and personal area were leadership skills, strategic thinking and planning, developing a policy framework, constituent services and conflict resolution skills. 11. Preference for workshop locations in rank order is Orlando, Tallahassee, Tampa, Gainesville, West Palm Beach and Jacksonville. SUMMARY Participation and returns of surveys by county commissioners and county administrators are at high levels. Prior to University of Florida Cooperative Extension becoming involved with the survey in 1998 the typical response rate was about 15 percent. In 1998, the survey response rate increased to 32 percent and, in 2002, the response rate was over 56 percent. Survey respondents indicated support for receiving some educational training through use of technology rather than at a location specific site. From an educational standpoint, the most important education needs of those serving as county commissioners or administrators are: Policy and procedure topic areas: growth management, land use planning and zoning, alternative revenues, economic development, strategic planning and community visioning and natural resources issues related to water and land use. People and personaltopic areas: strategic thinking and planning, leadership skills, developing a policy framework, conflict resolution and listening skills.

PAGE 4

1. How long have you been a county commissioner? 2 years or less 2 to 8 years 9 to 12 years More than 12 years 2. What is the population of your county: 75,000 or less 75,001 to 499,000 Over 500,000 3. How often do you attend FAC events each year? Often Occasionally Rarely Never 4. Have you attended any County Commissioners Certification (CCC) courses in the past? Yes No 5. If so, rate their value to you in your job: (check one) Always useful Never useful Sometimes useful No opinion 6. Of the following locations for CCC workshops, which would you prefer most? (check one) Orlando/Orange County Tampa/ Hillsborough County Tallahassee/ Leon County Jacksonville/ Duval County Gainesville/ Alachua County West Palm Beach/ Palm Beach County 7. Are you a CCC graduate: Yes No 8. If yes, would you be interested in continuing in an post graduate curriculum? Yes No 9. If yes, would you prefer that the post graduate curriculum be: (check one) A skills building program which addresses topics such as leadership development, conflict resolution, communications skills, or other practical skills useful to commissioners; OR, A policy issues approach addressing such topics as growth management, public finance, budgeting, environmental issues, or other policy issues?

PAGE 5

10. Would you be interested in including site visits to other counties as part of the post graduate program? Yes No Not sure 11. Would you support utilizing nationally recognized or professional speakers in the CCC programs even if the registration fees doubled from $125 to $250? Yes No Not sure 12. What is the best method for sending you information about education events or other FAC programs? Email US Mail Fax 13. In recent years, new technology has become available to do CCC training in different formats. If a maximum of 6 hours CCC training could be secured by using technology, how likely would you be to participate using the following technology? a.Web based computer technology (written material with short tests): Very Likely Likely Somewhat Likely Unlikely Not at all b.Streaming video computer technology (like watching a TV show on your computer): Very Likely Likely Somewhat Likely Unlikely Not at all c.Live real time training from a distant site (a teacher at a distant site broadcasting live): Very Likely Likely Somewhat Likely Unlikely Not at all d.Taped (DVD, VCR) training at a specific site in your county: Very Likely Likely Somewhat Likely Unlikely Not at all e.Phone conference coupled with computer based graphics : Very Likely Likely Somewhat Likely Unlikely Not at all 14. Would you support authorizing CCC credit for taking the computer based classes? Yes No No preference 15. Would you prefer a commissioners education program that provided computer based courses? Yes No Comments on any of the previous items: _____________ __________________ ____________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________

PAGE 6

16. What amount of trainin g do commissioners need on the followin g Polic y and Procedure to p ics to do their job better? (circle a number for each topic) Amount of training needed None A little Some A lot NotSurea. Alternative revenues (i.e. MSTUs,, impact fees, special assessments) 1234 0 b. Intergovernmental issues: annexation, CRA, urban service areas, etc.. 1 234 0 c. Public finance (bonding).................................................................... 1 234 0 d. Budgeting and financial management ............................................... 1 234 0 e. Charter Government and Home Rule ............................................... 1 234 0 f. Legislative Process........................1 2 34 0 g. Legal Aspects Major legal and case law considerations. 1 2 34 0 h. County government form & function 1 2 34 0 i. County government services (across the board).... 1 2 34 0 j.Technology E-government .............................................................1 2 34 0 k. Economic development ................. 1 234 0 l. Natural resources: water/land use ......... 1 2 34 0 m. Personnel policies/Labor law/employee relations 1 2 34 0 n. Ethics, Government in the Sunshine/Sunshine law 1 234 0 o. Strategic planning and community visioning. 1 2 34 0 p. Growth management .......................................................................... 1 234 0 q. Health & human services ................................................................... 1 234 0 r. Homeland Security..1 234 0 s. Public safety (including but not limited to terrorists threats) 1 2 34 0 t. Land use, planning and zoning ...........................................................1 2 34 0 t.Other: 1 234 0 u. Other: 1 234 0 17. Of the topics listed in question 16, which are the most important to helping Commissioners do a better job? (please identify by alphabetical character the top 3 training needs) _____Most Important _____2nd Most Important _____3rd Most Important

PAGE 7

18. What amount of trainin g do Commissioners need on the followin g Personal skills to do their job better? (circle a number for each topic) Amount of training needed None A little Some A lot NotSurea. Leadership skills................................................................... 1234 0 b. Conflict resolution ............... 1 234 0 c. Constituent relations .. ... ............................ ........... .................... ..... 1 234 0 d. Customer service .. ................................................................... 1 234 0 e. Strategic thinking and planning.........................................................1 2 34 0 f. Diversity training................................................................... 1 2 34 0 g. Stress management .. .....................................................................1 2 34 0 h. Time management; balance work and home life................................1 2 34 0 1.Listening skills................................................................... 1 2 34 0 J. Media/Presentation skills .................................................................1 234 0 k. Negotiating skills ................................................................... 1 2 34 0 1. Developing a Policy Framework (issues, alternatives, consequences) 1 2 34 0 m. Team Building................................................................... 1 234 0 n. Computer skills useful to commissioners............................... ........ 1 2 34 0 o. Other: 1 234 0 p. Other: 1 234 0 19Of the topics listed in question 18, which are the most important to helping Commissioners do a better job? (please identify by alphabetical character the top 3 training needs) _____Most Important _____2nd Most Important _____3rd Most Important PLEASE RETURN SURVEY TO IFAS FOR RECEIPT NO LATER THAN JANUARY 6, 2006 USE THE ENCLOSED ENVELOPE OR FAX TO THE FAC OFFICE AT (850) 488-7752. THANK YOU FOR YOUR ASSISTANCE. LOOK FOR THE NEW 2006-08 CURRICULUM AND SCHEDULE NEXT SPRING

PAGE 8

2006 County Commissioner Educational SurveyRodney L. Clouser

PAGE 9

Survey Response Rate Overall Response Rate: 56.3% 199 80% 51 20% Comm Admin

PAGE 10

Useable Survey Response Rate 246 Total Surveys (55.4%) 98.4 % Of All Returned 195 79% 51 21% Comm Admin

PAGE 11

Years As County Commissioner 44 23% 98 50% 32 16% 1 1% 19 10% < 2 Yrs 2-8 Yrs 9-12 Yrs > 12 Yrs NA

PAGE 12

Commissioner and Administrator Respondents By County Size 94 38% 113 47% 38 15% 1 0% 75000 75001-499000 500000 NACounty Pop

PAGE 13

CCC Graduate? 97 51% 2 1% 94 48% No Yes NA

PAGE 14

Interested In Post Graduate Curriculum? 88 76% 28 24% No Yes

PAGE 15

Post Graduate Curriculum: Skills or Policy Based? 99 71% 41 29% Skills Policy

PAGE 16

Visit Other Sites As Part Of Post Graduate Curriculum? 37 34% 18 16% 3 3% 52 47% Yes No Not Sure NA

PAGE 17

Nationally Or Professional Speakers? 45 23% 50 26% 75 38% 25 13% Yes No Not Sure NA

PAGE 18

Best Method To Contact? 14 6% 76 31% 133 54% 23 9% Email Mail Fax NA

PAGE 19

Training Using Technology: Web Based 22 9% 14 6% 76 31% 133 54% 23 9% Likely > Some L Unlikely Not At All NA

PAGE 20

Training Using Technology: Streaming Video 25 10% 46 19% 54 22% 110 45% 11 4% Likely > Some L Unlikely Not At All NA

PAGE 21

Training Using Technology: Live Real Time 10 4% 27 11% 73 30% 62 25% 74 30% Likely > Some L Unlikely Not At All NA

PAGE 22

Training Using Technology: Taped (DVD, VCR) 12 5% 21 9% 99 40% 50 20% 64 26% Likely > Some L Unlikely Not At All NA

PAGE 23

Training Using Technology: Phone With Computer Graphics 21 9% 27 11% 42 17% 94 38% 62 25% Likely > Some L Unlikely Not At All NA

PAGE 24

Authorize CCC Credit For Computer Based Classes? 0 20 40 60 80 100 120 140Yes No No Pref. NA!!More Than 6 in 10 Say Yes!!

PAGE 25

Preference For CCC Program That Provides Computer Based Courses 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 YesNoNA Com Admin

PAGE 26

Top Six Policy and Procedure Programs(indexed to highest vote total) 0.82 0.84 0.86 0.88 0.9 0.92 0.94 0.96 0.98 1 Gr. Mgt Land Use Alt. Rev Ec. Dev Plan/Vis Nat. Res

PAGE 27

Top Five People and Personal Programs(indexed to highest vote total) 0.84 0.86 0.88 0.9 0.92 0.94 0.96 0.98 1 Strategic Leader. Policy Frame Conflict Res Listening

PAGE 28

Most Important Policy and Procedure Program By Request 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 Gr. Mgt Budget Alt. Rev Plan/Vis Land Use

PAGE 29

Most Requested Policy and Procedure Programs 0 20 40 60 80 100 Gr. Mgt Budget Alt. Rev Land Use Plan/Vis

PAGE 30

Most Important People and Personal Program By Request 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 Leadership Strategic Policy Frame Constituent Conflict

PAGE 31

Most Requested People and Personal Programs 0 20 40 60 80 100 120 140 Strategic Leadership Policy Frame Constituent Conflict

PAGE 32

Most Preferred Location For CCC Workshops? 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90Orlando Tally Tampa G'villeW. Palm Jax