Voters from all around Lawrence County and surrounding counties gathered at the former Black Rock School cafeteria on Tuesday night to hear from speakers and fellow politicians in support of State Representative James Ratliff.
The event was sponsored by the Black Rock Fire Department and included dinner supplied by Bob and Sandyâ€™s BBQ of Hardy along with a host of deserts. The event began with the Pledge of Allegiance followed by a pray give by Dr. Brett Cooper of Williams Baptist College.
In attendance along with State Rep. James Ratliff were State Rep. Scott Baltz, Judge Elect John Thomison of Lawrence County, Justice of the Peace Pardo Roberts, Mr. David Cook, Imboden Fire Chief Jim Jones, Mayor Bonnie Ragsdale of Black Rock, Fire Chief Pat Roby Sr. of Black Rock, Justice of the Peace Mr. Junior Briner, Councilman Pat Roby Jr. of Black Rock, Councilwoman Vesta Smith of Black Rock, Councilman Harold Willett of Black Rock and many other distinguished guest.
Over 200 people gathered during the meal to listen to different speakers before State Rep. James Ratliff took the stage and spoke. Mr. Ratliff spoke on many subjects during the his speech including the work he has done with the fire departments in District 60 helping to provide well over 1 million dollars in grants and equipment to departments in his district. Ratliff has been a longtime supporter of local fire departments working closely to help provide grants and is an avid supporter of the Act 833 grants that provides an additional $200,000 to Lawrence County Fire Departments each year.
Ratliff spoke about growth in District 60 stating the district has seen steady growth of the last 6 years with more coming. He gave example like the Peco facility, Silica Plant in Black Rock, Taco Bell in Walnut Ridge, the peanut facility in Portia, Tractor Supply Company in Walnut Ridge, the expansion of the Dollar General franchise in District 60 and several smaller independent businesses around the district. Rep. Ratliff went on to say that more growth is in the near future with the possible addition of a national chain store to possibly be located in Ravenden.
Another point made by the State Representative was that he fought and will continue to fight to support Lawrence Memorial Hospital, the largest employer in Lawrence County and District 60. Ratliff also fought to continue funding for our local libraries which includes branches in Walnut Ridge, Lynn, Imboden and Williford.
State Representative Ratliff also stated he has a â€œAâ€ rating with the National Rifle Association and noted his opponent has a â€œCâ€ rating.