Making Democracy Work

Candidates for Local Office

Delaware County Clerk

Mike King

Party: Democrat

Status: Open Seat

Candidate chose not to participate in this voter guide.

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Victor Whitehead

Party: Republican

Status: Open Seat

Candidate chose not to participate in this voter guide.

Delaware County Recorder

Melanie Marshall

Party: Republican

Status: Open Seat

Candidate chose not to participate in this voter guide.

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Melissa Peckinpaugh

Party: Democrat

Status: Open Seat

Candidate chose not to participate in this voter guide.

Delaware County Sheriff

Michael Scroggins

Status: Incumbent

Party: Democrat

Website URL:

Date of birth: February, 1963

Place of birth: Muncie

Name of spouse:

Number of Children: 2

Education: 1981 Graduated Muncie Central Highschool, Attended Ball State University 1981 to 1983

Occupation: Delaware County Sheriff

Previously sought/held offices: Elected Delaware County Sheriff 2010

County Finances

How does the shortage of funds for Delaware County impact our judicial system, and the Sheriff's office in particular?

I manage the sheriff's Office budget very conservatively. I maintain a good working relationship and good communication with county council members and the county commissioners to assure that the Sheriff's Office always remains a full service law enforcement agency; maintaining the jail, court security, serving civil process and road patrol.The Sheriff's Office will always be able to provide quality law enforcement service to all the citizens of Delaware County, no matter the fiscal restraint while I serve as your Sheriff.

Disproportionate Sentencing

In your opinion, what factors contribute to the high rates of minority incarceration? What role (if any) does the Sheriff's office have in addressing this issue?

As your elected Sheriff and as a person I am color blind concerning this question. I identify citizens as law abiding or law violators. In accordance with my sworn oath, my job as your elected Sheriff is to arrest law violators on sight or by warrant, assure that if incarcerated all persons are brought before a judge in a timely manner. As your elected Sheriff I am sworn to enforce all state laws, county ordinances and uphold and protect the constitutions of Indiana and the United States.

Domestic Violence

How can the Sheriff's office effectively address domestic violence in Delaware County?

As your elected Sheriff I maintain a "zero" tolerance approach to handling domestic violence incidents by the Delaware County Sheriff's Office. The Delaware County Sheriff's Office aggressively pursues all domestic violence allegations. The Sheriff's Office also assists the victims of domestic violence through various resource agencies such as the victim's advocate office and The Better way.

Methamphetimines

In your opinion, what accounts for Delaware County having one of the highest recorded rates of meth labs in the state? What is the best way for the Sheriff's office to address the meth lab epidemic?

Aggressive law enforcement by the Delaware County Sheriff's Office, city, town and State Police. The numbers reflect meth labs that have been identified by some form of law enforcement intervention. Continue to aggressively investigate and arrest all individuals affiliated with this dangerous drug. Educate all citizens of Delaware County of the dangers affiliated with Meth and what to be aware of, to identify possible meth labs.

Policing policy

Some law enforcement agencies have equipped officers with devices that record their interactions with citizens. Do you support the use of such video-recording technologies?

Yes. Delaware County Sheriff's Deputies have recording devices to take suspect and witness statements and record evidence of a crime. Some deputies utilize their private on board videoequipment for citizen deputy interactions. The Sheriff's Office has access to those video's if needed. The Sheriff's Office currently does not employ on board video in the patrol vehicles due to costs of the video equipment.

Qualifications

What qualifications (skills/background) will you bring to this office? Why should voters support you rather than your opponent(s)?

I have been a member of the Delaware County Sheriff"s Office since 1986. I have worked every shift, and every area of the Delaware County Sheriff's Office. I have held every rank on the Sheriff's office, deputy though your elected Sheriff since January 2011. I was the uniform Captain for 13 years prior to being elected Sheriff in November of 2010. During this term as your elected Sheriff I have worked diligently to reduce the sheriff's Office budget annually as well as during each budget year, returning excess money to the general fund. In cooperation with the county commissioners I implemented a Sheriff's Office G.P.S. Home Detention Program, helping reduce costs in connection with inmates being housed out of county. I increased the number of road patrol deputies by a 1/3 through reorganization of personnel and I assigned a deputy to manage full time, the sexual/violent offender registry. I have 17 years administrative experience with the Delaware County sheriff's Office. I am a graduate of the FBI National Academy and I have extensive administrative and leadership experience.

If you are elected, how will you use your position as an elected leader to help solve Delaware County's most pressing problems?

I will continue to be proactive on budgetary issues as well as law enforcement and jail issues. My priority if I am honored to be re-elected as your Delaware County Sheriff, will be to form a committee to research and identify a workable solution to the on going inmate overcrowding issue with the jail. I will always strive to maintain the many working relationships I have developed with all the elected officials and department heads to guarantee that the Sheriff's Office always provides the best law enforcement service to the citizens of Delaware County.

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Jason Webber

Status: Challenger

Party: Republican

Candidate chose not to participate in this voter guide.

Judges of Circuit Courts 3, 4, and 5

Uncontested.

Delaware County Auditor, Assessor, and Coroner

Uncontested.

County Prosecuting Attorney 46th Judicial Court

Uncontested.

Center Township Trustee

Uncontested.

Delaware County Commissioner, District 3

Larry W. Bledsoe, Jr.

Status: Incumbent

Party: Democrat

Website URL: ltbledsoe@frontier.com

Date of birth: June, 1966

Place of birth: Muncie

Name of spouse: Torie Bledsoe

Number of Children: 3

Education: one year college

Occupation: Skilled operator

Previously sought/held offices: County Commissioner

County Finances

It appears that Delaware County will begin 2015 without reserves if we continue our present policies. How will county services be financed until the spring draw?

This will be up to the County Council as they are the fiscal body, but I would suspect they will have to borrow next year to get them to the spring draw. Taxes collected from 2007 pay 2008 to 2013 pay 2013 are down eighteen percent. There will undoubtedly need to be more reductions this year to resolve their problem.

Vote Centers

To what extent do you, in principle, oppose or support voting in advance of Election Day at secure locations (Vote Centers) other than the Courthouse?

Scale 1 (no support) to 10 (strongly support)

Candidate response: 7

I support the use of Voting Centers as it would provide more convenience to the voters especially in the urban areas, where most live and commute to work. There is a big concern for the high up front costs for implementation, but the reduced workers should offset those cost after a few election cycles. Need to be placed in high traffic areas to provide the convenience and accessibility to vote.

Election Administration

To what extent would you support combining precincts on Election Day in order to reduce the cost of administering elections?

Scale: 1 (no support) to 10 (strongly support)

Candidate response: 8

Anything that the Clerk's Office could do to reduce the amount of dollars spent on elections would have my full support. Officials need to be concerned that voters will have to travel longer distance's to vote and that could reduce the amount of voters in an election.

Cost Reduction

Which of the following would you support in effort to reduce the cost of county services? Please choose all that apply:

___ Outsourcing services to the private sector

___ Combining selected services/responsibilities with the City of Muncie

_X_ Combining responsibilities among county offices

_X_ Reducing personnel

___ Reducing the work week

Since elected, I have consolidated the Engineering Office into the County Highway, Building and Zoning now is under the Muncie/ Delaware Planning Commission, EMS director and the Director of EMS are now one position. Veterans Affairs secretary was merged into commissioner's office secretary. Negotiated contracts that exist between the city and county that are providing savings for both.

Qualifications

What qualifications (skills/background) will you bring to this office? Why should voters support you rather than your opponent(s)?

I Bring 7 years as county commissioner making decisions based on what is right for our community. I've consolidated many positions, reducing personnel and providing over $200,000 annual savings per year. Our EDIT fund has over three million in savings and all our infrastructure projects are completed funded. I will continue to question those who become complacent regardless of who they're related to and you should know I have no family employed in any local government position. I will listen and work for YOU! Experienced, Proven, and Motivated to work all the time. I promised that I would be responsive, responsible, and effective. I've done that.

If you are elected, how will you use your position as an elected leader to help solve Delaware County's most pressing problems?

If elected, I will continue to make the necessary changes that need to be done. Infrastructure needs to be a priority and doing what we can to provide for the families of this community. Delaware County needs to get back on track and it is going to take us all. Moms and dads caring for their children and I will make the necessary decisions to protect their future here. I want everyone to succeed and as a leader, will listen and work for everyone. It's important that we change the negative attitudes and work and to acknoweldge all the good our community offers.

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Shannon Henry

Status: Challenger

Party: Republican

Candidate chose not to participate in this voter guide.

Delaware County Council, District 1

Teresa Hensley

Status: Challenger

Party: Republican

Candidate chose not to participate in this voter guide.

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Christopher Matchett

Status: Incumbent

Party: Democrat

Candidate chose not to participate in this voter guide.

County Council District 2

Uncontested.

Delaware County Council, District 3

Mary Chambers

Status: Incumbent

Party: Democrat

Candidate chose not to participate in this voter guide.

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Rick Spangler

Status: Challenger

Party: Republican

Candidates chose not to participate in this voter guide.

County Council District 4

Uncontested

Yorktown Town Council, District 1

Rich Lee

Status: Incumbent

Party: Republican

Website URL:

Date of birth: May, 1963

Place of birth: Muncie

Name of spouse: Cheryl

Number of Children: 2

Education: Bachelor of Science, 1986, Ball State University

Occupation: President, The Regal Group, Inc.

Previously sought/held offices: Current Yorktown Town Council member

Reorganization

How would you judge the effectiveness of Yorktown reorganization and the new town council approach?

Scale: 1 (highly ineffective) to 1 (highly effective)

Candidate response: 10

The current town council has demonstrated the ability to work together with effective representation of the taxpayers for the overall benefit of our community. This has been an asset in reducing costs and government waste.

Public Confidence

What three specific actions will you take to make Yorktown town government more accountable and transparent?

Yorktown town government is transparent and accountable. There are improvements that can be made with consistency in updating the town's website. All council members are easily accessible by phone or email as is the Town Manager and the Clerk.

Public Service Funding

What is your level of your support for or against the proposed $2 million bond issue to build a new police station and buy a new fire truck.

Scale: 1 (Strongly oppose) - 10 (Strongly support)

Candidate response: 5 (no opinion)

There is no proposed bond issue.

Qualifications

What qualifications (skills/background) will you bring to this office? Why should voters support you rather than your opponent(s)?

I have over 25 years of successful business experience in Marketing as well as Finance/Budgeting. I have been a partner/owner of two successful and established marketing firms that are well respected in the industry, operating with the highest level of integrity and fiscally sound operations. I have also held positions as manager of Budgeting and Strategic Planning and did business planning and development for a regional CPA firm. I believe in a bi-partisan and transparent approach to government that will promote the growth and welfare of the community and serve the overall needs of the community.

If you are elected, how will you use your position as an elected leader to help solve Yorktown's most pressing problems?

One of the most pressing issues for Yorktown and Delaware County is economic development and job growth. By working with Delaware County Economic Development and the Yorktown Redevelopment Commission as well as the Chambers of Commerce, we can cultivate a plan to actively pursue development and new business. When governing agencies can combine resources and work together toward the overall benefit the towns, townships, city and county, we can have a very positive impact in our community. The current Yorktown Council has adopted a plan to promote, market and improve the downtown to attract new businesses, jobs and investors. As a council member, I will continue to represent and promote Yorktown and work toward facilitating the Downtown Action Plan in place.

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Jason Scarberry

Status: Challenger

Party: Democrat

Candidate chose not to participate in this voter guide.

Yorktown Town Council, District 4

Mike Blanch

Status: Challenger

Party: Democrat

Website URL:

Date of birth: November, 1939

Place of birth: Muncie

Name of spouse: Mary Ellen Blanch

Number of Children: 3

Education: High School/Burris/1957, Muncie, IN

Occupation: Farming

Previously sought/held offices: Yorktown School Board/ Yorktown Town Council

Reorganization

How would you judge the effectiveness of Yorktown reorganization and the new town council approach?

Scale: 1 (highly ineffective) to 1 (highly effective)

Candidate response: 2

I think the re-organization is ok, but we need to have more interest in the Rural areas of the Township also. We are all town now. I do not think the council has put much effort into making the town better. I think they are waiting for it to come to them.

Public Confidence

What three specific actions will you take to make Yorktown town government more accountable and transparent?

I would want to have more discussions about what we are wanting to do before we take a vote. We can have more input from the committee as to what they want and show the committee what we are spending their money for and why; not after the fact.

Public Service Funding

What is your level of your support for or against the proposed $2 million bond issue to build a new police station and buy a new fire truck.

Scale: 1 (Strongly oppose) - 10 (Strongly support)

Candidate response: 1

I do not think we need another 2 million dollar bond for 20 years, that would end up costing the community over 3.2 million. This would increase taxes substantially. I think we could manage to do all of this with the money we have to operate with and no increase in taxes. I do not think they are using common sense and thinking of the tax payers.

Qualifications

What qualifications (skills/background) will you bring to this office? Why should voters support you rather than your opponent(s)?

I worked at Borg Warner 40 years in management, and I have owned and operated a farm for 50 years. I have managed the assets of my farm very profitably for those years. I think I can help make this a better place to live and make decisions that would not raise taxes, but work to improve the community, at the same time with support of all in the community by being accountable and transparent.

<If you are elected, how will you use your position as an elected leader to help solve Yorktown's most pressing problems?

I would look at all problems to determine if it is a want or a need that the community could afford and try to make them work for the benefit of all, without having to raise taxes. I would make every effort to get more business in town, and the community, so we could improve and make more improvements that we would need in the future, without raising taxes.

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Robert Ratchford

Status: Incumbent

Party: Republican

Candidate chose not to participate in this voter guide.

Yorktown Town Council, At Large

Vote for two:

Vicki Craig

Status: Challenger

Party: Democrat

Website URL:

Date of birth: December, 1947

Place of birth: Muncie

Name of spouse: Ralph (Bud) Craig

Number of Children: 2

Education: YHS 1966, Attended BSU

Occupation: Retired Court Reporter/ Currently Free Lance Legal Assistant

Previously sought/held offices: School Board

Reorganization

How would you judge the effectiveness of Yorktown reorganization and the new town council approach?

Scale: 1 (highly ineffective) to 1 (highly effective)

Candidate response: 6

We are still in the beginning stage of seeing exactly how effective the consolidation is. To this point it appears to be successful. The idea of one governing body allows for better planned government, improvement of municipal services as well as fiscal responsibility. Along with streamlined government, all Mt. Pleasant residents now have a voice in governing their town. As far as how the new town council has approached the consolidation, I feel some areas are working better than others and I do believe there is always room for improvement.

Public Confidence

What three specific actions will you take to make Yorktown town government more accountable and transparent?

1) I want more input from the taxpayers, business owners, churches and schools. 2) I will provide more information to the taxpayers regarding budget, projects and planning. 3) I will always vote in favor of issues that enhance our town and the citizens who reside here, while keeping a watchful eye on unnecessary and excessive sending. Being ever mindful with regard to spending taxpayers dollars.

Public Service Funding

What is your level of your support for or against the proposed $2 million bond issue to build a new police station and buy a new fire truck.

Scale: 1 (Strongly oppose) - 10 (Strongly support)

Candidate response: 3

I am currently not in favor of the bond issue. I feel there are other avenues to explore to make both issues possible. For example, the fire dept. has an account with a $600,000.00 plus balance that should be used to help purchase the truck reducing the burden on taxpayers. As far as the police station, we need to determine where we stand with our court. Filing in our court is down, we need to determine the Prosecutor's plans to utilize our court in the future. Which means, we could possibly have a building, (YPD/Court Bldg.), available to remodel as a police station, if we no longer need a court. Obviously if there has to be a bond, taxes will go up. This is something I would not want to see happen if at all possible.

Qualifications

What qualifications (skills/background) will you bring to this office? Why should voters support you rather than your opponent(s)?

I have 35 years experience with the Delaware. Co. Court System where annually we prepared a budget. And, unfortunately as time passed, we had less money to work with. At that point you learn to adjust your spending based on your income. Running a State/County/Town/ budget is no different than running your household budget. You MUST live within your means! Determine your wants from your needs and plan ahead. I have run a free lance court reporting business and we currently have a hobby farm. Both private businesses that require a tight budget and planning. I was born and raised in this town, I want to see the business district prosper again. I want a town the residents are proud of and most of all, I want our heirs to reside here, know the history of the town and enjoy the feeling of belonging to a caring community. I am here to stay. Are you with me?

If you are elected, how will you use your position as an elected leader to help solve Yorktown's most pressing problems?

First we must determine what the most pressing problems are, the sewage system, water treatment, fire truck, police department, community center, sportsplex growth, trails, whatever it/they may be, then we have to prioritize. To do that we need input from the taxpayers, professionals and town employees who deal with some of these issues daily. We will have to make decisions as it is imperative to deal with some of these issues, eg. sewage system, within a reasonable amount of time. It is also important to remember resolving these issues plays a large role in the growth of our town specifically the commercial areas. I am a 4th generation Yorktown resident. I love this town. This is my home, my children and grandchildren reside here. I only want what is best for all the citizens. I want to see responsible and necessary spending made a priority along with a town full of prospering businesses. We have a great town, great potential and a great foundation to build on. Fortunately we have well educated citizens in our town, versed in many areas. We can draw from that vast array of knowledge and move forward. The town needs your help, I want and need your help. Let's get moving!

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Daniel Flanagan

Party: Republican

Candidate chose not to participate in this voter guide.

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Lon Fox

Status: Incumbent

Party: Republican

Candidate chose not to participate in this voter guide.

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Rick Yencer

Status: Challenger

Party: Democrat

Website URL:

Date of birth: October, 1954

Place of birth: Hartford City, IN

Name of spouse: widow

Number of Children: 1

Education: Bachelor, 1975, Ball State

Occupation: Self employed

Previously sought/held offices: Yorktown Town Council

Reorganization

How would you judge the effectiveness of Yorktown reorganization and the new town council approach?

Scale: 1 (highly ineffective) to 1 (highly effective)

Candidate response: 3

It has created a one party system that favors those who pay to play.This government is not responsible to all people, taking property by eminent domain for trails no one wants and spending public money on a sports park for members only. Even public safety has has taken a back seat after government hesitated to buy a new aerial fire truck.

Public Confidence

What three specific actions will you take to make Yorktown town government more accountable and transparent?

All meetings should be aired online or by the media. Public discussion should be held on all policy and spending matters before council acts. And government should represent the people especially when people say no to higher taxes or wasteful spending.

Public Service Funding

What is your level of your support for or against the proposed $2 million bond issue to build a new police station and buy a new fire truck.

Scale: 1 (Strongly oppose) - 10 (Strongly support)

Candidate response: 6

Public safety should be the priority of any community besides the economy. Although a bond is proposed to fund these capital expenses, money is available elsewhere to buy a new aerial fire truck despite delays by the town council. Other money can be found to renovate current buildings to accommodate police. The town council has been careless with spending money on trails and signs to promote the community. Other capital funds can be used for this expense to keep property taxes low and avoid more borrowing.

Qualifications

What qualifications (skills/background) will you bring to this office? Why should voters support you rather than your opponent(s)?

We seek to represent all people and bring a more diverse government instead the one party system. My years in media and government research and reporting besides a college education and activism in community offers a new way to govern and lead. This is unlike the current council where some members commit crimes, work for the government they represent or are related to each other. And it is time to do what people want instead of force government's will onto them by taking their land and money for projects that are not necessary.

If you are elected, how will you use your position as an elected leader to help solve Yorktown's most pressing problems?

We will help promote the community for new building and development. The town needs an attraction to bring people to the community and should consider a water park to coincide with the new Mounds Lake project. Efforts to build the economy should include more promotion of the Park One industrial site by working with the state and securing new development like the $80 million food processing plant in New Castle that choose another interstate location for its production and distribution. Working with Muncie and others in the Delaware County community would resolve the current approach by Yorktown to stand alone and take what benefits the town like the Westbrook Cammack sewer. New home building efforts also should be employed with tax incentives or other promotions to revive the building industry in Delaware County.

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