PROGRESS AS MAYOR
Mayor Becky Ames was sworn in to her first term as Beaumont’s 41st Mayor on May 22, 2007, and since her initial election, the Mayor has been subsequently re-elected to four additional two-year terms. A lifelong resident of Jefferson County who moved to Beaumont over three decades ago, Mayor Ames also served the City as an At-Large Beaumont City Councilmember from 1994 to 2007.
During her tenure, Mayor Ames has overseen an economic renaissance in Beaumont and has shepherded numerous successful projects and programs that have improved economic development that helped to advance the quality of life for its residents and visitors. With a particular focus on reviving Beaumont’s core, Mayor Ames has promoted successful investments. Some improvements that can easily be recognized include the popular Downtown Events Centre on Towne Lake, a first class Skate Park, the relocation of Best Years Center that is currently under construction and when complete will provide a modern and beautiful new facility for citizens to enjoy, numerous improvements to the Beaumont Civic Center and Riverfront Park on the bank of the Neches River. New brick sidewalks, decorative lighting, extensive landscaping and a concerted effort to fight litter, high weeds and graffiti have all resulted in more welcoming streets, walkways, bike lanes and common areas in the Downtown Central Business District.
For many years, infrastructure improvements have been a high priority for Beaumont residents and Mayor Ames working with the City Council and City staff responded with a host of important street improvements on Calder Avenue, Fannin Street and Washington Boulevard. In addition, sidewalk installation on East Lucas Drive and significant improvements were made to Beaumont’s Amtrak Station with a new facility built that includes a police sub-station.
Mayor Ames has also made sure that the City’s parks are maintained and improved. Features such as the dog park located at the Ida Reed Park, the Gulf Terrace and Folsom Hike & Bike Trails and a modern state of the art Tennis Center known to be one of the best in Texas are all popular additions to Beaumont.
When federal law placed significant restrictions on the use of royalties that the City earned from natural gas extraction at Beaumont Municipal Airport, Mayor Ames went to work with the Federal Aviation Administration, the City’s congressional delegation and City staff and lobbyists to enact legislation that allowed the City of Beaumont to use approximately $50 million in natural gas revenues on important street improvement projects that have impacted in a positive way all areas of the City.
Improved customer service has also been a hallmark of Mayor Ames’ time in office. The Mayor spearheaded an overhaul of the City’s permitting process, which included opening the one-stop-shop in City Hall and promoted the creation of a state-of-the art 311 call center, which helps Beaumont residents with non-emergency matters. In addition, a new first class facility that is centrally located and consolidated the City Health Department was recently completed, the recent addition to the historic Tyrell Public Library in the heart of downtown, and two new fire stations have increased and improved access to vital public services for Beaumont residents.
While serving as a councilmember, Mayor Ames was involved in a number of initiatives that have had a lasting impact on Beaumont, but perhaps her most significant contributions were in the days and weeks following Hurricane Rita, a category-5 storm that made a direct hit on the City in September 2005. Along with then-Mayor Guy Goodson, her Council colleagues, and city officials, Mayor Ames spent countless hours on both preparations for and response to the hurricane. In September 2008, Hurricane Ike hit under her watch as Mayor. Once more, along with Council colleagues and city officials, she led the City through evacuation and recovery.
Elected as Mayor Pro-Tem by her City Council colleagues four times during her tenure on the City Council, Mayor Ames has also been active in numerous government organizations such as the United States Conference of Mayors, National League of Cities, Texas Municipal League, and Southeast Texas Regional Planning Commission. In 1998, Governor George W. Bush appointed Ames to the Regional Review Committee, which was charged with oversight of federal community development and planning funds to the area.
Mayor Ames, who is currently the Administrator of the Medical Center of Southeast Texas Victory Campus, was educated at Hardin Jefferson High School and Texas A&M University, and has been married to Rodney Ames since 1983.
|Political advertising paid for by Committee to Elect Becky Ames, Gilbert I. (Buddy) Low, Treasurer, 148 S. Dowlen Road, PMB #772, Beaumont, Texas 77707|