Running for a public office has been a good experience for Dewayne "Dewey" Tautges, who defeated the incumbent for the Crow Wing County Board District 1 seat.
Tautges, of St. Mathias Township, received 2,940 votes, 62 percent, to Jim Hill's 1,771 votes, or 37.5 percent.
"This feels pretty good," said Tautges. "I didn't know what to expect, it turned out far better than I thought.
"I am looking forward to working with the county board and the rest of the county to deliver the service the taxpayers know and want."
Hill, rural Garrison, said he was surprised with the results and expected the race to be a toss-up between the two candidates. He was disappointed in the spread in the votes, but is happy with what he has achieved with the county since he took a seat in 1996.
"I ran for election then because the county was in shambles and I wanted to get it back on track and to have citizens be proud of where they lived," said Hill. "The county has now moved forward and I am happy at this point to where the county stands."
Tautges said his goals as a county commissioner will be to protect the rights of property owners, to be a conservative in spending and to do what is right for taxpayers.
Tautges spent about $4,500 on his campaign and exhausted many hours campaigning. He said the campaign trail has been a positive experience and he has seldom met any negativity. Hill spent about $6,000 on his campaign.
Tautges has lived in the county virtually all of his life. He is a third-generation farmer in St. Mathias Township. He has also served on the county's Board of Adjustment and has been a committee member for the Farm Service Agency for more than 20 years.
In the county's District 5 race, incumbent John Ferrari, Crosby, received 4,326, or 99 percent, of the votes. He ran unopposed.
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