ROCHESTER, Minn. - There are fully 16 candidates running for Rochester City Council - but only one incumbent seeking re-election - so the Med City will soon face a sea change in leadership. KIMT News 3 talked to veteran leaders Ardell Brede and Mark Bilderback on their hopes for the future.
Councilmember Mark Bilderback is upfront about why he's not seeking reelection.
"I'm just tired, it's gotten, the world has changed, politics has changed, it's not as friendly as it used to be," Bilderback said.
Following his many years as Mayor - Ardell Brede believes members of the council have lost a measure of friendly camaraderie.
"We need to have people talking to each other again and not just shouting at one another and doing that sort of stuff," Brede said.
Bilderback agrees with Brede.
"I do think we've lost a little bit of that relationship building, we all need to have some sort of team building," Bilderback said.
Bilderback will have a successor in January. A Rochester native - he's hopeful a new Council will mean new ideas.
"I hope we can come up with more activities not only for the people who live in Rochester but for those who come here," Bilderback said.
Both men are hopeful leadership will improve - as they reflect on what they leave behind.
"With all new people coming together, they'll have to rely on one another instead of having somebody embedded there for a long time," Brede said.
There are 4 candidates running for Bilderback's seat. The top two will go head to head in the general election. Tallying all the mail-in votes is expected to take a few days, so we're not expected to get the final numbers until sometime Friday.