St. Charles Parish Councilwoman-at-Large Beth Billings has announced her candidacy for the State House of Representatives’ District 56 seat.
“I will be forever grateful to the people of St. Charles Parish for entrusting me with the opportunity to serve on the parish council,” she said. “After much prayer and reflection, I have determined that my talents and government experience in advocating for our community will be best utilized at the State Capitol.”
Incumbent representative Greg Miller cannot seek re-election due to term limits. The election for state representatives will be on the Oct. 14 ballot, along with the governor and several other state and local offices.
“Legislative vacancies like we will see in District 56 don’t often occur as many incumbents are either handily re-elected or simply don’t draw opposition in their race,” Billings said. “The timing of my district race opening motivated me to think about how I could be most effective in advocating for St. Charles Parish. After discussing the future opportunity with my husband, David, and after much reflection and prayer, I determined the timing was exactly right, leading me to make the decision to run.”
Billings said her time serving on the parish council has given her knowledge of the issues related to every community in St. Charles Parish.
“I understand what our priorities are in each area and what the opportunities are for improvement,” she said. “Additionally, an essential aspect of serving as a council member is developing relationships with your colleagues to pass measures. To be an effective council member, you must learn to build coalitions. I’ve been able to accomplish this on the council, which resulted in my election as St. Charles Parish Council Chairwomen for 2023. The same ability to build a coalition to be an effective leader applies to the Louisiana state legislature. It’s not enough to merely have a good idea. You need the ability to work well enough with others to gain trust and enough votes to pass good ideas into law.”
Billings said as vice-chairwoman of the Republican Party of Louisiana she is in regular contact with a number of legislators, many of whom she will be working with when the 2024 term begins.
“I will have the advantage of working with colleagues with whom I already have an established, trusted political relationship,” she said. “As a state representative, I will hit the ground running, making the learning curve minimal … I already know the needs of St. Charles Parish and will be in a position to advocate for solutions.”
Billings said she declared her intentions early to provide citizens who may have the desire to serve St. Charles Parish with plenty of notice to plan their own campaigns for the council.
“St. Charles Parish is a great place to live, work, and raise a family. I want to do my part as a state representative to ensure that continues while also helping make Louisiana as a whole a better place to do so,” she said. “While other states in the South are experiencing a boom in economic and population growth, Louisiana seems to be the exception. We need to work not just to attract new people and business here but retain what we already have. Far too many parents have to travel out of state to see their children and grandchildren. With the abundance of resources Louisiana possesses, there’s no reason why we are in this situation.”