CARRBORO – A member of Carrboro’s planning board is the first to throw her name into the hat for the special election to fill Mayor Lydia Lavelle’s former seat on the Board of Aldermen.
Planning Board Chair, Bethany Chaney says she wants to focus on the affordability of the town if she’s elected.
“If we can’t attract and retain people that can live here, can also afford to buy the products and services that we offer here in Carrboro, and that can work here, too, we lose out,” Chaney says.
Chaney grew up in Chapel Hill and has lived in Carrboro since 2004. She graduated from Chapel HillHigh School and got her BA in interdisciplinary studies from UNC. She later went to Northeastern University where she received a general studies MBA.
Chaney was elected to the planning board in 2011. She’s in the final year of her first term and has served one and half one-year terms as chair. She says here time served has familiarized her with the procedures of advisory boards and local government.
“We don’t want to micromanage at the board level,” Chaney says. “But, we also want to help facilitate people doing their jobs well, doing it in the spirit of our vision, and to the letter of our ordinance.”
She says she’s noticed how important community involvement is when decisions are made.
Chaney also has nearly 20 years experience in the non-profit sector where she says she can bring knowledge of where there are underutilized areas into which the town can tap.
“For example, there are economic development and community development or affordable housing resources out there that are really better utilized for and targeted towards nonprofits or to private developers to use,” Chaney says. “If we have a better sense of where those resources are and the timing of those resources, we can plan in advance to encourage nonprofits and for-profit developers to go after those resources and put them to use here in town.”
The special election for the vacant seat on the Carrboro Board of Aldermen will be held May 6 during the North Carolina Primary. The filing period is February 10-28.