Top 26 Indicators
This City of Austin Dashboard includes 26 critical indicators of the City's success in serving the community. These top indicators were selected in 2011 in collaboration with Austin residents who graduated from the CityWorks Academy.
Window into Local Government
The City of Austin tracks hundreds of performance measures, and this dashboard provides City Council, City management and residents of Austin a tool to quickly assess how well the City is performing. This performance reporting increases accountability and fosters operational excellence.
How We Measure Up
Of the 26 measures included on the City of Austin Dashboard:
- 17, or 65.4%, met FY 2015-16 targets,
- 20, or 76.9%, either met, exceeded or came within 3% of their targets,
- 18, or 69.2%, improved or maintained performance from FY 2014-15 to FY 2015-16, and
- 23, or 88.5%, had a 7-year trend where the overall performance either improved or was maintained within normal variation.
Further discussion of the Dashboard measures within their service areas is below.
Six public safety performance measures are included on the Dashboard, including the city’s property and violent crime rates, response time to emergencies from the Police, Fire and Emergency Medical Services departments and the percent of fires contained to room of origin.
The City has regularly invested in public safety performance, and these departments continually examine data throughout the year and make operational adjustments as necessary to improve their performance.
The Austin Fire Department experienced a slight decrease in response times from 85% in FY 2014-15 to 83% in FY 2015-16. The Austin Fire Department continues to strive to provide the best service delivery throughout all areas of the City, however, the challenges to maintaining adequate unit response times continue to grow as the City expands geographically and increases in both population and traffic. The Fire Department continues to explore a variety of solutions to improve service delivery to residents.
Two mobility and infrastructure measures are included on the City of Austin Dashboard. These services are provided by the Public Works and Austin Transportation departments.
Neither measure met its FY 2015-16 target, however the percent of lane miles in fair to excellent condition was less than 3% under target .
Satisfaction with traffic flow in Austin remains low and continues to trend negatively, reaching a 7-year low of 10% in FY 2015-16.
Reversing the downward trend in citizen satisfaction with traffic flow is a multi-agency issue. The recent approval of the $720 million transportation bond will target various areas throughout the city to improve traffic flow. As part of that bond program, Austin Transportation is developing the framework for implementing improvements that will utilize $482 million of the funds for corridor improvements and $101 million for regional roadway improvements on State of Texas roadways. In addition, the Austin Transportation Department will continue to coordinate with regional partners in its work to address mobility options.
Six community services measures are included on the Dashboard. These measures represent services provided by Neighborhood Housing and Community Development, Animal Services, Austin Public Health, Austin Public Library, and Parks and Recreation.
Library program attendance per capita has increased steadily over the past 5 years. Programs have included events such as Yomicon - which hosted a record crowd, Juneteenth and other Holiday celebrations, Dia de los Ninos/Dia de los Libros programs, events to celebrate the history of American Music, crafting programs including the popular Night Crafters program, and coding classes.
The appearance of the park grounds in Austin is a direct reflection of the community and the values Austin citizens have for parks. The Grounds Maintenance Division maintains a consistent and high level of citizen satisfaction with the appearance of parks. In addition, Parks and Recreation continues to maintain a high level of citizen satisfaction with the appearance of park grounds while increasing parkland inventory. However, maintaining that balance will be a challenge as the department seeks to add new parkland inventory in light of population growth experienced by the community.
There are two measures in the Development Services category, provided by the Economic Development and the Development Services Departments.
On-time building inspections reflects the combined efforts of both residential and commercial building inspectors. Performance decreased slightly in FY 2015-16 compared to the previous year to a 91% on-time rate. Staff continues to experience an increase in workload.
In FY 2015-16, 429 jobs were created due to public and private initiatives, a 50% increase from the previous fiscal year. In FY 2014-15 and FY 2015-16, City Council did not approve new economic development agreements, resulting in decreases in job creation than in previous years. Economic Development has revised its focus to emphasize creating jobs for low and moderate income persons. New incentives may include the Einstein Project, an economic intervention initiative designed to remove children from poverty through mentoring and tutoring.
Four measures on the Dashboard relate to the City’s major business enterprise operations. These services are provided by Austin Energy, Austin Water, and Austin Resource Recovery.
The percent of waste stream diverted from the landfill has improved since the Single-Stream Recycling program began in October 2008. However, this progress is still below target.
Austin Energy’s reliability in electricity distribution continues to beat industry averages. The annual system line clearance maintenance cycle and targeted maintenance on Austin Energy’s electric system components helped to keep the results below target. Austin Energy has outperformed the industry average for the last five years.
The City of Austin draws water from the Colorado River into three water treatment plants: Davis, Ullrich, and Water Treatment Plant 4. Water Treatment Plant 4 became operational in FY 2014-15 and draws water from Lake Travis, providing an additional capacity of 50 million gallons per day. Austin Water operates and maintains the plants to ensure residents are receiving high-quality drinking water.
The City strives to maintain high bond ratings that represent low-risk for investors and also result in lower borrowing costs. Investors utilize these ratings, which are assigned by private independent rating agencies, when deciding whether to purchase bonds issued by the City.
Issued bonds help toward improving the City’s infrastructure.
In FY 2015‑16, Austin’s General Obligation Bonds received the highest triple-A rating from all three credit rating agencies, and it has received this highest rating from all three agencies since FY 2009-10.
Get More Information
Additional discussion of the 26 dashboard measures and their performance, as well as information on all 137 departmental key indicators included in the FY 2015-16 Annual Performance Report, can be found by browsing the service categories on the report's main page.