February 2014 Report

The San Francisco Survey

February 2014

Download Report
logo
About The San Francisco Survey
  • The San Francisco Survey is a project of the Committee on Jobs conducted by EMC Research and Fall Line Analytics. Our goals are to develop an on-going tool to gauge public opinion and to help inform elected officials and interested parties of the public’s views on policy issues. The San Francisco Survey uses an open and transparent platform and will release the results of each of the surveys it conducts.

  • In addition to providing survey results, the San Francisco Survey will release demographic and voter data on a regular basis to help inform policy discussions in San Francisco.

Methodology
  • Web Survey of San Francisco Registered Voters

  • Conducted in English and Chinese

  • Demographics closely match the demographics of the registered voters in the city

 

Date

Number of Interviews

Survey I

September 10-16, 2013 553

Survey II

November 4-7, 2013 631

Survey III

February 11-17, 2014 616
*Please note that due to rounding, percentages may not add up to exactly 100%
Overall Attitudes

Voters continue to love living in the city. Concern for families is up slightly.

San Francisco is a good place to live

September 2013

Strongly Agree
54%
Somewhat Agree
36%
Don't Know
1%
Somewhat Disagree
8%
Strongly Disagree
1%

February 2014

Strongly Agree
54%
Somewhat Agree
34%
Don't Know
0%
Somewhat Disagree
9%
Strongly Disagree
3%

San Francisco is a good place to raise a family

September 2013

Strongly Agree
14%
Somewhat Agree
36%
Don't Know
5%
Somewhat Disagree
31%
Strongly Disagree
14%

 

February 2014

Strongly Agree
15%
Somewhat Agree
32%
Don't Know
5%
Somewhat Disagree
27%
Strongly Disagree
20%

Excited about Future/Worried about Changes

Two-thirds of voters are at least cautiously optimistic about the city’s future.

31%
Excited about Future of SF
36%
Excited & Worried
28%
Unhappy or Worried about Changes in SF
Ratings: Board of Supervisors Favorability

Voters overall have mixed feelings about the Board.

Please rate the San Francisco Board of Supervisors

February 2014

Strongly Favorable
4%
Somewhat Favorable
40%
Never Heard of/ Can't Rate
19%
Somewhat Unfavorable
24%
Strongly Unfavorable
13%
Mayor Ed Lee Favorability

Mayor Lee continues to be popular.

Please rate Mayor Ed Lee

November 2013

Strongly Favorable
15%
Somewhat Favorable
37%
Never Heard of/ Can't Rate
19%
Somewhat Unfavorable
18%
Strongly Unfavorable
11%

February 2014

Strongly Favorable
13%
Somewhat Favorable
42%
Never Heard of/ Can't Rate
11%
Somewhat Unfavorable
20%
Strongly Unfavorable
14%
Problems and Priorities: Top Three Problems In San Francisco

Top of mind concern about housing is on the rise.

What would you say are the most important problems facing San Francisco today? (up to 3 responses accepted)

Total % Mentioning Item

Sept 2013

Nov 2013

Feb 2014

Cost of living

50% 56% 50%

Housing

33% 40% 45%

Homelessness

41% 42% 41%

Public transportation

25% 17% 25%

Education

22% 19% 19%

Traffic/streets & roads

14% 14% 18%

Crime/safety

20% 19% 17%

Parking

12% 14% 10%

Economy/Jobs

16% 14% 9%

Poverty

10% 11% 8%

Development

4% 4% 8%

Politicians/Government

8% 8% 7%
Most Important Problem Facing San Francisco
What would you say are the most important problems facing San Francisco today? (top ranked response)

What would you say are the most important problems facing San Francisco today? (top ranked response)

Top Three Problems For You and Your Family

Cost of living continues to be most mentioned concern for households.

What would you say are the most important problems facing you and your family today? (up to 3 responses accepted)

Sept 2013

Nov 2013

Feb 2014

Cost of living

60% 65% 60%

Housing

22% 26% 28%

Traffic/streets and roads

20% 19% 24%

Public transportation

21% 20% 22%

Economy/Jobs

27% 23% 20%

Crime/Safety

22% 24% 18%

Health care

16% 16% 16%

Parking

12% 16% 15%

Taxes

13% 16% 13%

Education

16% 12% 12%

Homelessness

10% 10% 10%

Politicians/Government

5% 6% 7%
Most Important Problem Facing You and Your Family

The economy is mentioned as a top concern for households less frequently.

What would you say are the most important problems facing you and your family today? (top ranked response)

What would you say are the most important problems facing you and your family today? (top ranked response)

What would you say are the most important problems facing you and your family today? (top ranked response)

Priorities

Everything is important to voters: education, cost of living, transportation, and more.

On a scale from 1 to 7, where 1 is not at all important and 7 is extremely important, how important do you feel each of the following should be in San Francisco right now?

Supporting quality education at local public schools

Extremely Important
57%
Important
32%

Controlling the cost of living

Extremely Important
52%
Important
28%

Improving public transportation

Extremely Important
47%
Important
36%

Public Safety and crime prevention

Extremely Important
45%
Important
39%

Addressing homelessness & street behavior

Extremely Important
44%
Important
39%

Creating local jobs

Extremely Important
41%
Important
37%

Repairing the City’s aging infrastructure (like roads, parks, & transit)

Extremely Important
41%
Important
42%

Investing City funds into subsidizing the construction of new affordable and middle class housing

Extremely Important
40%
Important
34%

Protecting SF residents from increased fees/taxes

Extremely Important
39%
Important
35%

Building more housing

Extremely Important
38%
Important
30%

Preventing eviction and neighborhood gentrification

Extremely Important
37%
Important
27%

Improving streets and roads

Extremely Important
34%
Important
42%

Maintaining a budget reserve to protect against economic downturn

Extremely Important
30%
Important
44%

Attracting and retaining San Francisco city and county workers

Extremely Important
21%
Important
35%

 

Priorities – Trend Over Time

There is little change in three months on issue priorities.

On a scale from 1 to 7, where 1 is not at all important and 7 is November 2013, how important do you feel each of the following should be in San Francisco right now?

Supporting quality education at local public schools

November 2013
87%
February 2014
89%

Public safety and crime prevention

November 2013
86%
February 2014
85%

Controlling the cost of living

November 2013
87%
February 2014
81%

Creating local jobs

November 2013
83%
February 2014
78%

Improving public transportation

November 2013
82%
February 2014
76%

Improving streets and roads

November 2013
72%
February 2014
76%

Protecting SF residents from increased fees/taxes

November 2013
72%
February 2014
74%

Building more housing

November 2013
66%
February 2014
68%
City Budget Priorities

Voters overwhelmingly support investing in infrastructure & housing with available funds.

San Francisco is likely to have a budget surplus this year due to strong economic growth. Thinking about spending priorities, how would you like to see the City And County of San Francisco utilize these funds? Please rank in order of priority.

Repairing the city’s aging infrastructure (like roads, parks, and transit)

 

Ranked 1st
39%
Ranked 2nd
38%
Ranked 3rd
14%
Ranked 4th
9%

Investing City funds into subsidizing the construction of new affordable and middle class housing

Ranked 1st
37%
Ranked 2nd
19%
Ranked 3rd
22%
Ranked 4th
21%

Maintaining a budget reserve to protect against economic downturn

Ranked 1st
19%
Ranked 2nd
33%
Ranked 3rd
30%
Ranked 4th
18%

Attracting and retaining San Francisco city and county workers

Ranked 1st
5%
Ranked 2nd
10%
Ranked 3rd
34%
Ranked 4th
52%
Opinions About “Laura’s Law”

Two thirds of voters think Laura’s Law will help address the homeless problem in SF.

And now on a different topic, some city officials have recently declared their support for implementing “Laura’s Law.” This law was approved by the California legislature in 2002 and would allow city officials to implement a program for court ordered mental health treatment for people who have been diagnosed as severely mentally ill and are at risk of harming themselves and others. The program does not force medication as part of the mental health treatment.

Do you agree or disagree that the proposed adoption of “Laura’s Law”…

Will help address the homeless problem in San Francisco

Strongly Agree
29%
Somewhat Agree
37%
Don't Know
15%
Somewhat Disagree
10%
Strongly Disagree
9%

Will improve the safety of San Franciscans

Strongly Agree
30%
Somewhat Agree
36%
Don't Know
16%
Somewhat Disagree
11%
Strongly Disagree
7%

Is a tool for families to help their loved ones

Strongly Agree
33%
Somewhat Agree
36%
Don't Know
16%
Somewhat Disagree
10%
Strongly Disagree
5%
Housing in SF

Housing for the middle class, local investment & protecting rent control are priorities.

And now, thinking specifically about housing in San Francisco, how important do you feel it should be to…

Build more housing for middle-income families and individuals

Very Important
46%
Somewhat Important
32%

Encourage new housing in neighborhoods by making sure that taxes and fees paid on the new housing gets invested back into the neighborhood.

Very Important
37%
Somewhat Important
38%

Protect existing rent-controlled housing

Very Important
45%
Somewhat Important
23%

Build more subsidized, affordable housing

Very Important
38%
Somewhat Important
29%

Make it legal to have small “in-law” units in existing buildings

Very Important
31%
Somewhat Important
34%

Build more housing for low-income families

Very Important
35%
Somewhat Important
27%

Use publicly owned sites to build housing

Very Important
28%
Somewhat Important
31%

Revitalize and rebuild public housing

Very Important
27%
Somewhat Important
31%

Build more housing for all income levels

Very Important
32%
Somewhat Important
27%
Affordable Housing Qualifying Income

Voters perceive that affordable housing qualifying income is too low.

Which of the following household incomes do you think currently qualify for affordable housing in San Francisco? (highest category selected is shown)

Which of the following household incomes should qualify for affordable housing in San Francisco? (highest category selected is shown)

Difference

Less than $25,000

26%

10%

-16%

25,000 – $49,999

32%

26%

-6%

$50,000 – $74,999

18%

32%

14%

$75,000 – $99,999

8%

17%

9%

$100,000 – $149,999

5%

7%

2%

$150,000 – $199,999

2%

3%

1%

$200,000 +

9%

5%

-4%

“Affordable Housing” Means…

Policymakers use the term “affordable housing,” but what they are referring to is not what voters are thinking of when they hear the term.

  • “A family of 4 [that] has enough money (earned) that they can afford rent and food and have enough left over to save for a ‘rainy day’”

  • “Housing that is reasonably priced”

  • “Affordable housing” means housing that is affordable to people on government assistance or working for minimum wage.”

  • “Affordable to people who have full time jobs.”

  • “$1,000 per room.”

  • “A family making 150k can afford to live in sf”

  • “A family of 4 who makes $50k a year can still pay rent.”

  • “… A ‘basic’ 2 bedroom home without the frills.”

  • “Able to pay the rent on the salary you earn.”

  • “Affordable for a median income family”

  • “Affordable by a single income that makes under $70,000 salary”

  • “Affordable housing means a one bedroom one bath should be $1000 NOT $4000!”

Your Home in SF

Self-reported home affordability is divided, but many are paying what they can’t afford.

Thinking about your current home in San Francisco, would you say it’s…

  • 37% put themselves on the unaffordable side of the scale with 18% on the far end.

  • 42% put themselves on the affordable end with 27% on the very affordable end.

Self-reported home affordability is divided, but many are paying what they can’t afford.

 

Your Home in SF

Most think their neighborhood is safe and many think their home is too small.

Thinking about your current home in San Francisco, would you say it’s…

  • 42% are on the too small end of the scale

  • 16% are concerned about the safety of their neighborhood

  • 68% are on the safe side of the scale

Most think their neighborhood is safe and many think their home is too small.

Likelihood of Moving Within, Out of SF

 

Most think their neighborhood is safe and many think their home is too small.

Over one-third say they are likely to move out of the City in the next few years.

I am likely to move out of San Francisco in the next few years

Strongly Agree
14%
Somewhat Agree
20%
Don't Know
12%
Somewhat Disagree
18%
Strongly Disagree
36%

I am likely to move within San Francisco in the next few years

Strongly Agree
12%
Somewhat Agree
18%
Don't Know
15%
Somewhat Disagree
15%
Strongly Disagree
41%

Note: 10% of respondents either strongly or somewhat agree with both statements

 

Contacts
Ruth Bernstein

ruth@emcresearch.com

510.550.8922

David Latterman

dlatterman@flanalytics.com

415.407.8256