Jeff Kletscher adds name to DFL primary in 5B

Jeff Kletscher, entering his third fifth term mayor of Floodwood and current president of the League of Minnesota Small Cities, has joined the DFL primary fray in the House 5B special election.

Kletscher has been in Floodwood city government for more than 18 years and works as a real estate broker after a career as a math and computer teacher. He joins a growing field of DFL candidates for the seat vacated by former State Rep. and current Iron Range Resources commissioner Tony Sertich.

Kletscher’s statement from an e-mail to me:

I have been active in local government for over 18 years, 10 years on the Floodwood City Council and the past 8+ as Floodwood Mayor; The opportunity has now presented itself to represent the citizens of District 5B at the State Capital. I have worked and lobbied hard for my city at the State Capitol during those 18 years. Over the past several years I have also worked hard to represent the states small cities at the State Capitol. In June of 2010, I was elected the president of the Minnesota Association of Small Cities, a voluntary municipal membership organization that representsover 300 communities under the population of 5000. 

I’ve described District 5B as the Iron Range towns of Hibbing and Chisholm and a great number of big land/small population townships between the Range and Duluth. Most of the votes are in Hibbing and Chisholm, so those rural townships often feel left out of the political equation. Floodwood, which is small but also represents the district’s third largest city, is also situated in this low-lying southern portion of the district. Kletscher’s entrance in the race, with little fanfare but an interesting resume, adds additional drama to what was already a fascinating DFL primary.

Kletscher joins Shelley Robinson, Carly Melin and Cynthia Kafut Hagen, who told me today she will file Tuesday, in the Feb. 1 DFL primary. The winner will likely face Republican Paul Jacobson in the Feb. 15 general election. Filling will remain open Tuesday until 5 p.m., so additional candidates may enter the race.

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