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New La Crosse mayor and council members to take office Tuesday

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After eight years as the top elected official in La Crosse, Tim Kabat has just a few more hours as mayor before retiring from the job. 

Kabat will preside over a brief city council meeting Tuesday afternoon at 4 p.m., before his successor Mitch Reynolds is sworn in. 

Former WIZM news anchor and talk show host Reynolds defeated former Chamber of Commerce director Vicki Markussen by 205 votes in the election for mayor on April 6th.

Mayor Kabat has also been the chair of the La Crosse board of public works, and presided over his last meeting on that committee Monday, saying public works is “the most interesting committee in the city, by far.”    

Six newly-elected city council members will also take office Tuesday, along with Doug Happel, the only member of the council who chose to seek re-election in April.   The new members will give the council a female majority for the first time in La Crosse’s history.  

Just before the election, Kabat appeared on La Crosse Talk P.M., the show formerly hosted by Reynolds, and had some advice for his successor: “…to listen to the citizens and do your best, because that is the one role in the entire city government that is really there to represent all of the people.”

Kabat has served eight years in the mayor’s office, following work in the city planning department and a period as director of Downtown Mainstreet, Inc.  He was the first two-term mayor since John Medinger retired in 2005. 

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.