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Bender wins mayoral vote

Dan Bender is Red Wing's new mayor.

Bender garnered 945 votes of the 2,455 cast in Tuesday's special election, according to unofficial results.

"I thought that we had done a good job," Bender said. "When I was out campaigning it was pretty well received. But you never know."

Bender, a former City Council member, said he thinks his experience in government along with his message that he will "consider all sides of issues, try to put good thought into things" and promote Red Wing was what voters liked.

The other vote counts were:

• John Sachen -- 640 votes

• Samantha Tix -- 542 votes

• Christopher Nelson -- 158 votes

• Ernest Stone -- 110 votes

• Elizabeth Kocina -- 54 votes

There also were six write-ins, according to the city's unofficial vote tally.

The 2,455 votes cast represented almost 26 percent of registered voters in the city.

Turnout in February 2011, when former mayor Dennis Egan won a special election, was about 14 percent.

"I'm still a little disappointed with that," Bender said of the 25.84 percent turnout Tuesday.

The City Council will meet at 7:30 a.m. Friday to canvass the election results and finalize them.

The mayor's position has been empty since April after Egan stepped down. He resigned amid concerns about his work with the Minnesota Industrial Sand Council.

Council President Lisa Bayley has been serving as acting mayor.

Issues such as silica sand mining, the future of Mississippi National Golf Links and the city budget dominated discussions before the election.

The new mayor will be sworn in at the June 24 City Council meeting, and likely will have to hit the ground running.

"We have a stack of things waiting for the new mayor," Bayley said at Monday's City Council meeting before the election.

The mayor's term will end January 2017.

Danielle Killey

Danielle Killey covers local government for the South Washington County Bulletin. She has worked as a reporter for other Forum Communications newspapers since 2011. She graduated from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities with a journalism degree.

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