Election 2016: Sauk Rapids To Elect A New Mayor
SAUK RAPIDS - Sauk Rapids voters will elect a new mayor in the General Election on Tuesday. Current mayor Brad Gunderson was eliminated from the race during the Primary Election back in August. He received the fewest votes among the three men on the ballot. Here's a look at the two men that remain, and will be on the ballot on Tuesday.
Sauk Rapids city council member Kurt Hunstiger is running for mayor. He says, after spending years on the city planning commission and on the city council, he's ready to make the leap.
I've been preparing myself for the last 22 years, and I just felt that this was the time. I'm getting a bit older now, and I've got a lot of experience. And, I have a lot of contacts from the 22 years that I have worked with the city. I've got 35 years of experience around St. Cloud in the financial services industry. And, I thought this was it.
Hunstiger says he wants to be fiscally responsible in planning for the city's future infrastructure. He says he's also like to set-up community listening sessions to get feedback from residents.
He says growing the city's tax base is a priority for him.
I think we also have to attract businesses, not just downtown but to our industrial parks. We need an adequate supply of those properties, but we also need to bring additional jobs to town.
Hunstiger says more new housing construction is important too to keep and attract new residents to Sauk Rapids.
Hunstiger is married with two adult children. He's a wealth adviser at Bremer Trust.
He's been on the city council for 10 years, and started on the city planning commission.
The other candidate is political new-comer Guy Konietzko. He says his contacts with the state and federal governments will help the city with it's long term plans.
In the military we have a common saying that your foxhole is never done, and that improving it is always paramount in your efforts to make things better. I feel the same way about this. I feel like I'm postured to improve things, and I'm probably the most likely candidate to get a lot of the stuff done that's already been planned for or approved by the board.
He says he decided to run for mayor after giving it a lot of thought.
Ultimately it came down to, if you want influence in the process and improving your community you have to become part of the process. So, after a lot of deliberation between my wife and myself, we decided that now is a good time for us to become part of the process.
This is his first run for public office.
Koneitzko is a retired military service member, and he currently works at Geocomm in downtown St. Cloud.
He has a wife and three kids - one in the Sauk Rapids middle school, and two at Pleasantview. They moved to Sauk Rapids in 2001.