Brooklyn Park elects new mayor in special voteby Rupa Shenoy, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — Former Brooklyn Park City Council Member Jeffrey Lunde has won a 12-way race for the town's mayor.
The election was held to finish the term of three-term Mayor Steve Lampi, who died of cancer in February.
The northwest Twin Cities suburb held the election Saturday to increase turnout. Officials at the Minnesota Secretary of State's office say they can't remember another Saturday election in Minnesota's history.
Brooklyn Park city clerk Devin Montero said the city's plan worked.
"I think we were anticipating between 10 and 20 percent and I think we hit a 20 percent turnout," Montero said. "I'm comparing it with the primary elections — between 8 and 10 percent. So we did better than the primary elections."
There were about 39,000 people eligible to vote and about 9,200 turned out at the polls. Lunde won with nearly 2,600 votes.
The new mayor had to win with a margin of more than one-half of 1 percent. Lunde won with about 30 percent of ballots cast. The runner up had nearly 17 percent of the vote.
Montero said election officials feared a recount.
"The thinking was it was going to be close but after last night's results it wasn't the case," Montero said. "We were ready though."