Race For New Iberia City Council Member District One – Republicans Shelley Hebert And Natalie Robin Vie For Open Seat In Runoff
Two Republicans are in a runoff for the Distict One seat in the city of New Iberia - Shelley Hebert and Natalie Robin.
The November 6th General Election proved to be very close among the two women. Natalie Robin finished with 42% of the vote, while Shelley Hebert finished with 37% and "No Party" candidate Rocky Romero failed to qualify for the runoff after finishing with 21% of the vote. Robin was able to garner just over a hundred votes more than Hebert, finishing with 947 votes to 836 votes for Hebert.
This seat has been held by Therese Segura for the past eight years. She is terming out after serving her two terms. If the general election is any indication, this runoff could be very interesting - and very close.
When we asked her "What's the issue that means the most to you pertaining to your district," she responded by giving two issues that have caught her attention.
#1 Drainage - In District One, we have many different areas where the drainage has not been brought up to date. And they're working on that.
She went on to cite a project that the City Council is doing off of Highway 31, Monterrey Street and James Street area, where they will put a detention pond in that area to relieve flooding after heavy rainstorms that she says people and businesses have had to deal with for many years.
#2 Getting More Businesses Into District One - We'd like to make it more appealing to businesses to come into District One.
She went on to cite the major highway corridors that go through District One, Highway 31 which goes through St. Martinville and Portions of Highway 182 which leads into the Broussard area, as examples of how to attract businesses to her district.
When we asked her "Why should voters choose you over your competitors? What sets you apart?," she talked fondly about how she has lived and raised a family in the district for over 47 years, since she was 3-years-old. She says she feels that experience gives her an edge over her opponents, which, unlike a lot of political campaigns, she spoke well of by calling them "great opponents." Running for this seat is something that she says she has been thinking about for over 20 years, and that "now is the time" to make the move.
Now, at this point in my life, I can do it and be a full-time council member when elected. I wouldn't want to jump into something like this and only do it part-time. I wanted to be able get to a point in my life to where I could do it full-time. People call during the day, during the evening, I can go out and see what it is that's sparking their concern.
She was a teacher at the high school level for 17 years, teaching history, civics and free enterprise and government. She gave this advice to students which she decided to take herself:
I would always tell my students that first and foremost when they turned 18 they needed to become registered voters. Secondly, as they grew older and grew into adulthood and got their own family, they saw that something needed to be changed in government, and the people that were in government at the time just didn't seem to be a part of the change, they needed to do something to jump in on it.
Attempts to reach Natalie Robin in response to our questions have been unsuccessful.