Gov. Dayton has appointed DFL Rep. Tony Sertich to be the next commissioner of Iron Range Resources according to a person with knowledge of the hire. Sertich will meet with the media in Chisholm to discuss the hire on Tuesday. He could not be reached for comment tonight but told MPR News earlier today that he applied for the job.
Sertich will be tasked with crafting a vision to help revitalize northeastern Minnesota. The Board gives business financing, low interest business loans and economic development grants to businesses.
Sertich is the first state lawmaker to be appointed to a position within the Dayton Administration. Hewas in line to be Minnesota Speaker of the House but lost that position when Republicans won control of the House.
The appointment means Gov. Dayton will have to call a special election to replace Sertich. I’m told the tentative plan for a special election will be a primary on February 1st and the general election on February 15th. The legislative district, which includes Chisholm, is a heavy DFL area so the biggest question mark will be to see who wins what is expected to be a crowded DFL Primary.
The Mesabi Daily News was first to report the hire.