THE much talked about Moyne Shire Council bias towards Port Fairy could be real, according to a council survey.
Residents of Mortlake and Woolsthorpe are less satisfied with the council than their Port Fairy counterparts, a community satisfaction survey shows.
But civic leaders said the survey results likely represented "perception" rather than actuality, while the council stated the results could be skewed by surveying participants not necessarily engaged with the council.
Four-hundred residents completed a phone survey earlier this year, and were asked to rate the council on 14 performance areas for its community satisfaction survey.
The council overall performed to the state average and above average compared with other large Victorian councils, but results noted respondents with Port Fairy's postcode gave a "significantly higher" score than the council average.
On the 14 measures, Mortlake residents rated the council an average of nine points lower out of a possible 100 than Port Fairy residents, while Woolsthorpe residents rated the council two points lower.
For Mortlake residents, council support for business, community and tourism was rated 24 points behind Port Fairy, while council support for community and cultural activities was rated 20 points lower.
In Woolsthorpe, residents were 17 points less satisfied with the council's elderly support services than Port Fairy residents.
Councillor Jill Parker said the data showed "a perception" that effort was not evenly distributed.
"There is still a bit of a thing in Mortlake that we are a fair way away from Port Fairy and we might not get the added extras," Cr Parker said.
"Port Fairy has lots of events, its winter weekends, its spring festivals and folk festival, it has a focus on that sort of thing, where we only have a couple of things in Mortlake."
The town hosts an annual arts show in June and a Christmas pageant in December, while a buskers festival was recently discontinued.
Mayor Mick Wolfe said he believed Mortlake "pound for pound" had received a fair share of council and state government support, and pointed to upgrades to the swimming pool, DC Farren Oval facilities, streetscape and planned upgrades to Tea Tree Lake Reserve.
"That's what helps to make communities, they are certainly not neglected," Cr Wolfe said.
"It might be that people in the Mortlake area are in very rural areas and don't use the facilities that are provided to them in both state and local government."
He was not surprised that ratings of Woolsthorpe's council-managed elderly support services had fared worse, which he said was because Port Fairy and Mortlake also had access to state-managed aged care services.
Overall, roads fared worse in the survey with residents scoring unsealed roads at 35 out of 100 and sealed roads 39.
But Cr Wolfe said he believed this was due to residents not distinguishing between state government-managed arterial roads and council roads.
"We still have lots more work to do on it, but out of a $43 milllion budget when we allocate $9 million towards it, we are talking 25 per cent of the budget goes towards roads," he said.
"If we were to double that there would be no renewal works, no maintenance work done."
The council's acting chief executive Trev Greenberger said the surveys mixed results for townships would be considered in the council's future planning.
"While the results can be influenced by the number of respondents who have had actual dealings with council, where there are notable differences between townships, these are considered in our service delivery planning and annual works program," Mr Greenberger said.
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