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      109th District race heats up

      The candidates for the 109th District Representative seat are upping their campaigning in the final stretch before the election.

      Democrat John Kivela and Republican Jack Hubbard are both touting their experience while stumping on the campaign trail.

      This is a district campaign for both candidates. The open seat is being vacated by Democrat Steve Lindberg, who served the maximum of three terms in the State House of Representatives.

      Kivela cites his past four years as mayor of Maquette, the U.P.'s most populated city.

      "I've been at this in some form for 12 years, working in government," explained Kivela. "I've got a lot of contacts down in Lansing; we've worked very well with the governor's office on a number of these issues."

      The Marquette native has served six years on the city commission, where he says he worked across party lines.

      The 109th District has been held by a Democrat for nearly five decades, but that has not intimidated Republican Jack Hubbard, who has a history fighting uphill battles. The Burt Township Supervisor made headlines for his role in securing funding for the long-anticipated Grand Marais breakwater.

      During a recent stop in Marquette, Governor Rick Snyder applauded Hubbard's efforts to complete the breakwater.

      "I'm willing to stand up to the bureaucrats," said Hubbard. "The Grand Marais breakwater would never have been built if I were to let the bureaucrats, with their regulations, push me around."

      Hubbard says he's ready to bring his tough work ethic to Lansing.

      "I feel that it is very important to have somebody in this position that is willing to fight for the U.P. and the 109th District," Hubbard said.

      Both Kivela and Hubbard say they'll be meeting with as many potential voters as they can, right up until the polls close on Tuesday.