By Nick Nunn, Staff Writer
James Bratcher has been a resident of Rutledge for over 20 years. In 1990, he built a home for himself and his wife, Linda, and, for the past eight years, Bratcher has served as a member of the Rutledge City Council.
Bratcher was prepared to seek re-election for his city council position – his term would expire this year – but decided to run for the mayor’s position when Spencer Knight, current mayor of Rutledge and “long-time friend” of Bratcher, told him that he would be stepping down from the position at the end of the year.
Although Bratcher claims that Rutledge has “no big issues” and is “running smoothly,” there are a number of projects he has in mind for the city.
He expressed the desire to complete the city’s new park and landscaping, particularly in order to “get [the] walking trails in order.”
Bratcher said that he will also tackle Rutledge’s water and sewer infrastructure, which he says is “getting old to some extent.”
Bratcher stated that he welcomes the growth that the Stanton Springs development will bring in the next several years, but he is also proud that, during his tenure on the Rutledge City Council, they have not been forced to raise taxes or the water rates for residents of the city.
Should he be elected, Bratcher intends to “take bumps in the road as they come,” by dealing with problems as they arise.
Bratcher holds Joellen Artz, his opponent in the mayoral race, in high esteem, describing her as “a good lady” and “a good business lady,” but believes that she does not have the experience that would allow her to understand the overall workings of the city.
“There’s a lot more to the city than just downtown Rutledge,” said Bratcher, who intends to focus the city’s services on the entire municipality.
“I just want to make the people of Rutledge as happy as possible,” said Bratcher. “Everybody seems to be happy.”