Gov. Mark Dayton on Monday set Dec. 8 for a special election in House District 3A, to replace the late Rep. David Dill, DFL-Crane Lake, who died of cancer early this month.

Dill was first elected to the Minnesota House in 2002, serving seven terms. He was known as an advocate for the outdoors.

Already two candidates have emerged ahead of the opening of the candidate filing period Aug. 25. They are Ely City Council Member Heidi Omerza and Koochiching County Commissioner Rob Ecklund.

The December election will be the second special election this year. Dayton had previously set Nov. 3 as the date for a special election to fill the vacancy left by Rep. Ryan Winkler, DFL-Golden Valley. Winkler earlier this summer moved to Belgium because his wife, Jenny Winkler, accepted a job there with a hotel management firm based in Brussels.

Ricardo Lopez