Fontas/CODA Poll: Analyzing New Yorkers' Public Policy Perspectives (April 2022)

Sponsored by Fontas Advisors and Core Decision Analytics, this poll is independent and not affiliated with any client, candidate campaign, nor any independent expenditure effort for or against the recall.

Fontas/CODA Poll: Analyzing New Yorkers' Public Policy Perspectives (April 2022)

NEW YORK, NEW YORK — April 6, 2022— Fontas Advisors and Core Decision Analytics (CODA) released a poll today measuring the opinions of New York City voters on key policy proposals introduced over Mayor Eric Adams’ first 100 days in office. The online poll of N=840 registered NYC voters was conducted from March 28-31, 2022 and represents a broad snapshot of New York City.


“Across the board we see overwhelming support for Mayor Adams’ policing agenda as New Yorkers are grappling with a deep concern about crime and public safety,” said George Fontas, Founder and CEO of Fontas Advisors, a leading NYC-based government affairs consultancy. “Our poll shows that bail reform and the NYPD’s new anti-gun unit have extraordinary support from New Yorkers.”


“Crime is the cloud hanging over New Yorkers’ heads right now,” said Matt Lien, Vice President at Core Decision Analytics. “New Yorkers are unsure of their future here and want to see changes in their neighborhoods. With crime so intensely on the minds of New Yorkers, it’s no surprise so many have a pessimistic outlook on life in the city today.”


The full survey results including complete question wording, as well as demographics and screening criteria, are available here.

Shaped by an overwhelming concern about crime, New Yorkers have a pessimistic view of life in the city.

  • At 41%, crime is considered the “issue most important to you living in New York City today.” Inflation / gas prices / cost of living is a distant second at 19% with all other issues in single digits.
  • 46% of voters said that the city is “headed in the right direction” vs. 54% who believe it is “headed down the wrong track.”
  • 59% agree with the statement “My family would have a better future if we left NYC permanently.” This is up from 42% agree when Fontas/CODA polled on the same topic in February 2022, most likely driven by concerns about crime and cost of living.
  • New Yorkers have a split view of the future with 51% saying New York City’s best days are ahead and 49% saying New York City’s best days are behind.
  • Overall, respondents rate quality of life in New York City as 9% excellent, 32% good, 36% fair, and 23% poor.

However, New Yorkers are overwhelmingly supportive of Mayor Adams' policy proposals to address crime, public safety, and quality of life and are willing to give him a chance to implement his agenda.

  • 94% of voters agree that “New York City needs to balance stricter law enforcement alongside solutions to the societal problems that cause crime,” a common talking point of the Adams Administration. This includes 62% who strongly agree.
  • 92% of New Yorkers are supportive of changing New York’s bail laws so judges can consider the dangerousness of a defendant when determining bail, including 60% who strongly agree.
  • On gun violence, 85% of New Yorkers are supportive of launching a special anti-gun police unit who wear modified uniforms and drive unmarked vehicles and 95% of New Yorkers agree with increasingly penalties for gun traffickers.
  • In terms of addressing issues in the subway system, 77% of New Yorkers agree with using NYPD to remove homeless individuals who are sleeping on subway cars and in subway stations. Interestingly, 90% agree that NYPD chiefs and other leadership should be required to work shifts in the subway system to better understand the situation.

On COVID policies, voters are generally more supportive of reopening efforts, though they are split on mask mandates for schools in the current climate.

However, if another outbreak occurs, New Yorkers favor a return to stricter policies.

  • 75% of New Yorkers said if the city faced another COVID outbreak, they would want public schools to reinstate mask mandates for all children, even those who are vaccinated. Only 25% want to maintain the current policy not requiring vaccinated students to wear a mask.
  • Similarly, in the event of another outbreak, 77% of respondents favor stricter policies such as reinstating mask mandates and vaccine mandates at restaurants and indoor venues.
  • 71% of New Yorkers are supportive of mandatory COVID vaccination requirements, including 42% who strongly agree.

As New Yorkers emerge from the Covid-19 pandemic, they express a receptivity to innovation that reimagines daily life in New York City in completely new and different ways.

  • 74% support the conversion of current office space into housing in Midtown and Downtown Manhattan.
  • 74% of respondents are in favor of safe and clean swimming in the Hudson and East River.
  • 73% are supportive of mandatory trash composting for all NYC residents.
  • 73% are supportive of expanded availability of “micro-mobility” vehicles, such as scooters or electric bike rentals.
  • 56% support congestion pricing for driving a car in Lower Manhattan
  • 53% of New Yorkers support the construction of a casino in Manhattan

“Our poll found that New Yorkers are clearly ready to move beyond COVID, widely supporting in-person education, the lifting of mask mandates, and continued implementation of COVID vaccination requirements,” Lien said. “However, it’s interesting to note that after several waves, caution is still top of mind for New Yorkers as the wide majority would favor a return to stricter policies with another COVID outbreak.”


“New York City has always been a hub of innovation and a place to implement bold new ideas. Despite the city’s numerous challenges as it emerges from the pandemic, our poll showed that New Yorkers forward-thinking attitude has fortunately persisted,” Fontas said. “For example, we found that New Yorkers are overwhelmingly supportive of new policies and solutions to enhance livability including expanded recreational offerings such as safe and clean swimming in the city’s waterways and mandatory composting for all city residents.”

Methodology

In partnership with Fontas Advisors, Core Decision Analytics (CODA) conducted N=840 internet interviews among New York City registered voters from March 28-31, 2022. The overall margin of error is +/-3.38% at the 95% confidence interval. The full survey results including complete question wording, as well as demographics and screening criteria, are available here.

About Fontas Advisors

Fontas Advisors is a boutique government affairs consultancy serving the next-generation needs of corporations, nonprofits, and trade associations operating in and partnering with New York, New Jersey, and California. We leverage our robust network, strong knowledge of state and municipal administrations, and decades of combined experience representing innovative leaders to drive results for our clients. With Fontas Advisors there is always a path forward. Learn more at fontasadvisors.com.

About Core Decision Analytics

Core Decision Analytics (CODA) provides actionable opinion insights and cutting-edge data analytics programs grounded in trustworthy quantitative, qualitative, and advanced analytics methods. CODA leverages decades of experience in over 20 countries on behalf of governments, campaigns, business organizations, associations, and corporate clients. Learn more at coredecision.com.