July 24, 2006
Filings closed; primary set for Sept. 12
By Lynda Jensen
The political season for 2006 is underway with candidates lined up for the Sept. 12 primary, after official filings closed Thursday for several positions.
Big races on the horizon will be for sheriff in McLeod County, as well as filling the seat to be vacated by State Rep. Scott Newman (R-Hutchinson), who plans to run for a judgeship.
Three candidates filed for McLeod County sheriff, including Wes Olson of Glencoe, Scott Rehmann of Winsted, and Mark Taylor of Hutchinson. McLeod Sheriff Wayne Vinkemeier plans to retire.
All the area state representatives and state senate positions will be open, including positions served by State Sen. Steve Dille and State Rep. Dean Urdahl.
In addition, Carver County Sheriff Bud Olson and Wright County Sheriff Gary Miller have announced their intentions to run again. Both will run unopposed.
Other positions open
Several other positions are open, including three state senate seats in the local area, and five local state representative seats. They include the following:
State senate seats open
• State Senator District 18 Steve Dille (R)
Dille re-filed for this seat, with challenger Hal Kimball of Annandale (DFL) filing against him.
District 18 includes all of Meeker and McLeod counties, plus the following areas in Wright County: the cities of Howard Lake, Cokato, and Annandale; and townships of French Lake, Middleville, South Haven, Southside, and Stockholm.
• State Senator District 19 Amy Koch (R)
Koch re-filed for this position, with one challenger, Todd Ketchel of Otsego (DFL).
District 19 includes all of Wright County except for the area covered by District 18 (see above).
• State Senator District 34 Julianne Ortman of Chanhassen (R)
Ortman will run against Laura Helmer of Chanhassen (DFL).
District 34 consists of Hollywood Township and the City of New Germany.
State rep. seats open
• State Rep. District 18B Dean Urdahl (R)
Urdahl refiled, with a familiar opponent filing against him, Dave Detert of Litchfield (DFL).
District 18B includes the cities of Annandale, Cokato, Howard Lake, and South Haven, and the townships of Cokato, Corinna, French Lake, Middleville, Stockholm, and Southside in Wright County, and extends west into Meeker County.
• State Rep. District 19A Bruce Anderson (R)
Anderson re-filed for this spot, with one challenger, Millie Vetsch (DFL).
District 19A includes Marysville Township, as well as the area surrounding the City of Buffalo.
• State Rep. District 18A Scott Newman (R)
Two candidates filed for this seat, which Newman is leaving vacant, Ron Shimanski of Silver Lake (R), and Kevin Johnson of Hutchinson (DFL).
District 18A includes all of McLeod County, plus Collinwood Township in Wright County, Cedar Mills, and Cedar Mills Township in Meeker County.
• State Rep. District 19B Tom Emmer (R)
Emmer re-filed for this position, with one challenger, Christ Brazelton of Delano (DFL).
District 19B consists of communities in eastern Wright County and a small portion of western Hennepin County. This includes the cities of Montrose and Waverly, as well as the townships of Franklin, Victor, and Woodland.
• State Rep. District 34A Paul Kohls (R)
Kohls re-filed, with Marcia Krueger of Norwood Young America (DFL) challenging him.
District 34A consists of Hollywood Township and the City of New Germany.
County seats open
All three counties will also feature open seats for the county attorney’s offices.
Local voters will also fill the Wright County auditor position and one local county commissioner seat, that of Dick Mattson.
In Carver, the attorney is Michael Fahey; in McLeod, the attorney is Michael Junge; and in Wright County attorney Tom Kelly. All three of these men are running unopposed.
For county auditor, two of three local counties will feature an election Wright and McLeod Counties with Carver keeping it as an appointed position.
In Wright, the office is served by Bob Hiivala, and in McLeod by Cindy Schultz. Both are running unopposed. Also in McLeod, Linda Radtke filed for county treasurer, and Lynn Ette Schrupp for county recorder.
For county commissioners, the only local position up for election is Dick Mattson in Wright County. Mattson serves District 5, which includes Cokato City and Township, French Lake Township, Howard Lake City, Maple Lake City, Marysville Township, Middleville Township, Montrose City, Stockholm Township, and Victor Township.
Mattson lives south of Buffalo in Marysville Township and was first elected to the county board in 1992. He is being challenged by Tom LaPlant of Buffalo.
The other commissioner seat open in Wright County is Pat Sawatzke, who represents District 2, which encompasses the Monticello area. He is running unopposed.
For Carver and McLeod, commissioner seats that are open do not pertain to local voters.
Congressional seats open
Three Congressional districts are also open, including District 6, being vacated by Mark Kennedy; District 7, served by Collin Peterson of Detroit Lakes (DFL); and District 2, being served by John Kline of Burnsville (R).
Kennedy has declared his intentions to run for the US senate seat being vacated by Mark Dayton, with three candidates filing for his current position, including Michele Bachmann of Woodbury (R), John Binkowski of St. Mary’s Pt. of the Independence Party, and Patty Wetterling of Anoka (D).
US District 6 includes a huge chunk of area that is northwest of the Twin Cities. At its southern end, it includes the townships of Cokato, Middleville, Marysville, Stockholm, Victor, and Woodland; and the cities of Howard Lake, Waverly, Montrose, and Cokato.
The US representative seat served by Kline is US District 2, which encompasses an area south of the Twin Cities, reaching from Faribault to Cottage Grove on the east and Carver County to the west.
Three filed for District 2, Kline, Coleen Rowley of Apple Valley (DFL), and Doug Williams of the Independence Party.
The seat served by Peterson is US District 7, which includes a huge chunk of area covering the entire western portion of the state, from Lake of the Woods to the north, down to the Iowa border to the south. It includes Meeker and McLeod counties.
Four filed for the District 7 congressional seat, Peterson the incumbent; Erik Thompson, who is also a DFLer; Mike Barrett of Long Prairie (R), and Ken Lucier of the conservative Constitution Party.
Soil and Water spots open
In McLeod, the supervisor position for Soil and Water Conservation that serves the Winsted and Lester Prairie area is up, which is District 1. It is currently served by Charles Mathews. He is running unopposed.
For Carver, the Soil and Water Conservation district supervisor is up in District 5, which is served by Robert Burandt. District 5 includes a piece of Mayer, Waconia Township and Cologne, as well as other areas to the east. Burandt is running unopposed.
In Wright County, the supervisor position for District 3 in Soil and Water is up, which includes the townships of Franklin, Rockford, and Woodland, as well as the cities of Montrose and Waverly. The seat is currently served by Mary Wetter.
Wetter re-filed, with two opponents, Bob Adams of Buffalo, and Bob Kretsch.
Those running must live inside this district, but once elected the supervisor will serve countywide, commented Kerry Saxton of Wright County Soil and Water.