BILLINGS, Mont. - With the new public safety mill levy in place, the City of Billings is looking to maximize resources in the police department and make comparisons with other communities across the nation. To do that, they want to hear from Billings residents.
In partnership with Polco and the National Research Center, the city has created a survey with 25 questions, ranging from quality of police services to public trust, diversity and inclusion, safety, and communications. The survey was first sent to a random sample of 3,000 households and now it's open to all Billings residents.
"What we want to do is use the results of the survey, number one, to hear from the community. What do they think about the police department and the services that are being provided? What are they concerned about in the community as far as crime and other issues? We want to hear it from a broad range of that community," said Kevin Iffland, Assistant City Administrator.
Iffland says about 300 people have filled it out, and so far the preliminary results haven't surprised him.
"As far as Billings as a place to live, you know we're looking at a 69-70% good or excellent place for that," he said.
But there are some concerns.
"People don't feel as safe downtown in the evening hours. I think we've also heard that from some of the business owners downtown."
The survey will be open until December. It takes about 10 minutes and responses are anonymous. Once all the results are in, the city will make the data available to the public.
You can fill out the survey here.