3 file for 5th Commissioner District

Published 9:29 am Thursday, November 4, 2010

Candidate filing for the vacant Freeborn County 5th District commissioner’s seat began at 8 a.m. Wednesday.

Mike Lee

By 11 a.m., the Auditor-Treasurer’s Office had already received three candidacy affidavits.

Those who filed Wednesday were Curtis Smith, 1302 Southview Lane, Albert Lea; Mike Lee, 2141 Kenneth Drive, Albert Lea, and Doug Conn, 1500 Seath Drive, Albert Lea.

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Smith and Lee ran for the position in 2008.

A special general election will be held March 15 to fill the seat vacated by Linda Tuttle, who resigned from the position on Aug. 1.

Tuttle is accused of using her company, Albert Lea Abstract Co., to divert money into her own accounts to pursue her alleged gambling addiction. She is scheduled to appear in Freeborn County District Court on Nov. 12, facing 12 counts of felony theft by swindle, along with one count of racketeering in the case.

Curtis Smith

Tuttle won the seat in the 2008 general election by defeating Lee on a vote of 1,752 to 1,548. Tuttle and Lee had survived the 2008 primary election by beating Smith, Tony Pestorious and Chad Severtson.

The 5th District consists of Pickerel Lake Township plus Albert Lea’s 3rd and 6th Wards.

Freeborn County Auditor-Treasurer Dennis Distad said the term will begin on March 28, 2011. The cost of filing is $50.

He said people must meet the following requirements to file for the office: Be eligible to vote in Minnesota, currently not running as a candidate for any other office, be 21 years of age by March 28 and have maintained residence in the 5th District for at least 30 days prior to the general election on March 15.

Doug Conn

Anyone filing for the office of 5th District commissioner will receive a packet that includes an affidavit of candidacy and a 2010 campaign manual, along with an outline of the duties and general Q&A from the Association of Minnesota Counties.

The filing period ends at 5 p.m. Nov. 17. The phone number for the Auditor-Treasurer’s Office is 507-377-5121.