Stearns County's Dist. 5 has new commissioner

This article submitted by Linda Stelling on 11/10/98.

Donald Otte, Sauk Centre, is the new District Five Stearns County Commissioner.

Otte defeated Henry Dickhaus, a 20-year incumbent serving District 5, by a margin of 6,398 to 4,023.

ďI was ready to accept anything that came out of the election,Ē Otte said. ďYou never know what can happen in politics. I had a good feeling about this election after the primary.Ē

Otte will be sworn in as the new commissioner in January. He will be resigning from his seat as soil and water conservation supervisor.

ďMy goals are to bring more aware-ness to the western half of Stearns County. I realize I have a lot to learn, but I want to bring agriculture to the forefront in Stearns County. Agriculture is big business in the county and we need to keep it a strong and viable industry,Ē Otte said.

Otte hopes to be instrumental in getting all the county offices toll free lines. This could make the county offices more accessible to the residents of Stearns County, he stated. ďMany offices already have toll free lines, but the numbers are not always made known to the public,Ē Otte added.

ďI want to be accessible to the people of my district. I have no secret agendas. There are 19 townships in my district and I hope to be able to meet their needs. I will accept constructive criticisim as it will help me become a better commis-sioner,Ē Otte said.

Otte has farmed all his life in Sauk Centre Township. He has been a supervisor/vice chairman of the Stearns County Soil and Water Conservation District for the past eight years, and is chairman of the Sauk Centre Township Planning Commission.

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