ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- The special election for the Rochester City Council President chair is Tuesday. KTTC had a chance to sit down with candidate Jan Throndson.
Throndson is a Lifelong Rochester resident, John Marshall graduate, and the product of a vo-tech school. Throndson is now retired after 27 years of working for federal law enforcement... and has volunteered many hours and dollars to remembering those who have served, as a founder of the Bell of Honor.
Throndson filed for office back in May as the original challenger of the late incumbent Denny Hanson.
And to this day, his platform hasn't changed.
"I truly believe that I have a management style that is different. That is there. And a true leadership that can bring the council around to be more transparent and accountable for what is going on," he said.
Throndson says with the way things are being run in Rochester, it's the small businessmen who are suffering. "The big issue is that we need to treat our businessmen in this town better than what we have. I'll bring up Rochester City Lines. We disrespected a long-time resident and businessman of Rochester and ended up in a lawsuit. We can't do that. We have to take inside and incorporate all of our business leaders," he said.
Holding true to his roots, he says it starts with expanding trade schools and not necessarily focusing all efforts into just one business like Mayo Clinic. This comes at a time when the idea of a Destination Medical Center is just beginning to gain traction.
With more and more Mayo-Rochester discussions to be addressed by the city council, Throndson says he won't be doing a disservice to the city.
"I have no conflict of interest," he clarified. "A couple of city council members right now, one of my opponents running, could have could have a conflict of interest that would recuse his vote. Which would now take it down to a five person vote with two of them recusing because it would be directly involved with maybe Mayo."
Throndson explains Rochester needs to be prepared for the 30,000 jobs the DMC plan could bring.
"I support growing small businesses in the community because other people will come to Rochester other than working in the medical field and we have to be able to do that," he said.
And notes he'll have more time to do it.
"I bring an independent voice. I will be a full time city council president unlike my opponents who already have full time jobs," he said. "19,560 people supported me the last time. And I hope they come out this time to support me again."
The special election is March 19, this Tuesday.
Other candidates are Michael Wojick, Jeff Thompson, and Randy Staver.
The winning candidate will need to break the 50-percent plus-one threshold to earn the seat.
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