Campaign funds for Olmsted County sheriffs race mount
Sheriff David Mueller has raised more than $25,000 in his campaign to be re-elected for the Olmsted County office, though $10,000 of that money was a loan from Mueller to the campaign.
The two candidates for Olmsted County Sheriff handed in campaign financial reports on Friday.
The reports, required by state law, were due on Monday, so both candidates turned them in early.
Incumbent Sheriff David Mueller has raised more than $25,000 in his re-election campaign, although $10,000 of that money was a loan from Mueller to the campaign.
His challenger, Capt. Kevin Torgerson, has raised more than $15,000. Many of Torgerson's donations came from other officials within the Olmsted County Sheriff's Office, according to his report.
The sheriff's race will not have a primary election since there are only two candidates, but both Mueller and Torgerson have been actively campaigning, and signs for both are already dotting yards across the county.
Mueller was elected sheriff in 2010 and has been serving since 2011. He started as a deputy sheriff in 1981 and worked various roles within Olmsted County since then, including 14 years in human resources.
"I really tried very hard as the sheriff to do the things that I said I would do when I got elected," Mueller said.
Some of those issues included ensuring officers were fit, mentally and physically, for the job, including random drug screenings, he said. Mueller said he's also worked to improve investigations within the department and collaborate with nearby counties in order to save money.
Mueller's campaign spent almost $4,000 on billboards, as well as thousands on sign printing and more than $1,000 on stickers, according to his report, which he filed Aug. 1.
"Certainly we feel good about what we've accomplished and where we're at," Mueller said. "From a financial perspective, like anything, we'd always like to have more money to get our message out."
Torgerson has been with the sheriff's office for 28 years and is currently a captain, and he highlights his law enforcement work as the primary reason people should vote for him.
"The number 1 reason is continuous law enforcement service and experience and continuous law enforcement leadership," Torgerson said.
Torgerson spent a few hundred dollars on parade registration and more than $300 on candy for parades, including those during Rochesterfest, the Viola Gopher Count and Stewartville Summerfest.
Torgerson said he's feeling on track about fundraising efforts so far.
"I feel very good about what we're doing and how we're doing it," he said.