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Mayor Kabat talks of La Crosse flooding to U.S. Senate panel

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The flood season seems to have lasted for most of 2019 in La Crosse, and the mayor is frustrated. 

Mayor Tim Kabat told a Senate committee in Washington on Tuesday what La Crosse, and other cities along the Mississippi River, have had to deal with this year.

“We have folks that are still pumping water out of the their basements in October and November,” Kabat said. “Those homes have been there forever and ever, and the surroundings have changed, so what can we do to try to make their homes tougher and more resilient?”    

Kabat told Senators that some home basements in La Crosse are being filled in to prevent flooding, while other families are being moved. 

Kabat argued that cities don’t have enough money to find permanent solutions for every family in the floodplain.  

He was invited to appear at the hearing by U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), who sits on the special climate change committee. 

Baldwin spoke about rising levels of rain around the U.S., noting that in late August of 2018, the La Crosse area received nearly 10 inches of rain in one day, causing flash flooding which brought major damage to towns such as Coon Valley.  

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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