Incumbent Shelly L. Betz is one of three candidates—including Jaden Ingle and incumbent Ray Little—running for two, four-year positions on the Morgan City Council.
Betz moved to Morgan City in August of 2006. As part of her job, she regularly attended both planning commission and city council meetings.
“I found I really wanted to serve and thought I could bring some new perspective and additional energy to the council,” said Betz, 48. So, she ran for a city council position and has been serving since January of 2010.
In the last four years, Betz said her council position has taught her a lot.
“Everything we do is not as easy as it should be. A simple task can turn out to be a monumental one,” Betz said. “There are federal, state and local codes that must be followed. There are also procedures and requirements and a certain order to how things must be accomplished.”
Betz said she takes particular care to research issues before casting her vote. The effort takes a lot of time, she said.
“There is a lot, and I mean a lot, of time and effort that goes into almost everything we do as a council,” she said. “No one person can accomplish anything. It takes everyone working together.”
Despite the work, she has found out that there is no way to make everyone happy.
“There is always someone that may not like the choices we have made,” she said. “I believe the biggest challenge the council has faced was voting ‘for’ an issue when we knew it wasn’t what the community wanted, but it was what the federal government mandated. That decision was both emotionally and physically taxing.”
Looking forward to the next four years, she said the biggest issue facing the city is bringing more economic development into the area, along with much-needed foot traffic to help keep existing businesses open.
To handle the challenge, Betz plans to continue researching and implementing business incentives that fit the Morgan community.
“We do not have a lot of money to entice new businesses to locate within the city limits,” Betz said. “We need to be creative and open-minded.”
She said the current council has done a great job thinking “outside of the box” and has therefore accomplished much.
“I truly believe the results speak for themselves,” she said.
Betz is a former small business owner and has work experience in business administration and office management.