The city of Kingman outpaced its neighbors in a new survey of local business environments released by the Mohave County Economic Development Division on Monday.
The county surveyed 130 businesses located throughout Lake Havasu City, Bullhead City and Kingman.
Each business was asked, through an in-person interview, to rate its respective locale on eight categories ranging from government and community services to education and transportation infrastructure. Ratings were based on a seven-point scale, one being least satisfied, seven most satisfied.
While all three cities received predominantly average or above average marks from their respective businesses, Kingman did exceptionally well in a number of areas.
Kingman scored higher than Lake Havasu and Bullhead for nearly every transportation criteria, from road maintenance to traffic control.
While most of these scores only differed by negligible amounts - a 4.5 for Kingman's maintenance versus only 4 for Lake Havasu - Kingman scored substantially better on its airline and public transportation services.
Kingman also outdid its neighbors in most governmental services including taxes, regulatory enforcement and sign regulations. Additionally, businesses ranked Kingman's workforce the best in the county, citing greater satisfaction with the local workforce's availability, quality, stability and productivity than its neighbors. The availability and quality scores were noticeably higher than Bullhead's and Lake Havasu's, with Kingman polling about one to two points ahead of each.
Among most other categories, all three cities polled about even, with scores ranging from average to above average in such areas as technology utilization, internet access and utility services.
The only survey area where Kingman did substantially worse than its neighbors was economic development, where Kingman only managed an average rating, while Bullhead and Lake Havasu scored above average. Bullhead City's economic development did particularly well, scoring a full two points above Kingman's. All three cities received above average ratings for their tourism and chamber of commerce functions.
While the Mohave County Economic Development Division has previously released annual business reports for the county and its three major cities, this survey is the first of its kind to compile business data from all three cities in one place for comparison. In a press release issued by the county on Monday, Deputy Director of Economic Development Jonas Peterson said the survey was conducted "to help our public and private leaders identify issues that need to be addressed," as well as allow the county to market itself to outside businesses.
"The things that we do well in Mohave County, we use from a marketing standpoint to show businesses, in an unbiased manner, the positives of locating in Kingman, Bullhead City and Lake Havasu City," Peterson said.
Kingman Mayor John Salem said the survey results were "really impressive" and reflected the city's great potential as a hub for business. Salem said he planned on distributing copies to his associates on the City Council to discuss at an upcoming meeting.
"I can't tell you how happy I am to see this, it just goes to show you that Kingman's a great place to live," Salem said. "Everybody likes a pat on the back once in a while, and I think Kingman just got one."
The full Tri-Cities Comparison report is available online by going to www.mohavedevelopment.org and clicking the "B3 Building Bridges to Business" icon. For additional information on the report, call Peterson at (928) 753-0723.