Seymour City Council At-Large: Joshua Ratliff Q and A


What are your thoughts on annexation and TIF districts?

I would be in favor of annexation. You are providing property owners with services and increasing the value of their property while creating much-needed revenue for the city. We would need to evaluate the area to make sure it was a good fit for the residents first. TIF allows cities to capitalize on future taxes. If it is done right, it should attract businesses and increase value to the area. If it is not planned properly, you have taken much-needed revenue away from the city. Most information I have found points toward the latter.

Do you think the city needs to pursue solar energy? Why or why not?

I absolutely think our community should pursue solar and other alternative energy sources. It could create jobs, it is better for our environment and helps create a sustainable future for our city.

What do you think the city needs to do to improve public safety?

I want everyone to feel safe in our city. We should make sure our first responders have the best training and equipment available to them so they are able to do their job quickly and effectively.

Are there any infrastructure (roads/sewer) projects you think the city needs to pursue?

I think we need to focus on ways to fix our outdated sewer system. I can look out my front window during a heavy rain and watch Second Street flood in minutes. This is true for many parts of the city. I have heard so many concerns about the sewer system. This needs to be a priority.

What improvements do you think need to be made to our parks?

I love being able to take my children to the pool, playgrounds, baseball diamonds and soccer fields. We have wonderful parks, but we face a large challenge with the Shields Park Pool. The city has received several proposals, but we will have to see which one gives us the best value for our community’s needs.

Do you think any changes need to be made to the public transportation system?

I would need to evaluate it before making any changes. Is it easy to purchase a pass? Do the hours of operation work for most people? Does it stop and go where most people need it to? A nice alternative would be to develop a city bike rental system for our Crossroads Community Trails.

What ways do you feel the city should increase revenue and/or cut expenses?

We should prioritize our projects so we are not spending money on things the city does not need. I question how much revenue the city has lost from tax abatements. Do the businesses that have received tax abatement really offer us good-paying permanent jobs and a good quality of life? If they don’t, why are they receiving these benefits?

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Joshua Ratliff

Age: 39

Occupation: Quality control manager

Education: Graduated from Scottsburg High School, Associate of Science degree from Sullivan University, served in the Indiana National Guard Army from 1997 to 2003

Previous government offices held: None

Community affiliations: Leadership Jackson County, Seymour Oktoberfest

Family: My wife, Rebekah Ratliff, and I have three children, Layla, Sophia and Liam


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