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Housing or sustainability? La Crosse County leaders, public have different preferences



La Crosse County leaders and members of the public agree on the two most important needs for which $23 million from Washington could be spent.

They disagree, however, on which need is more important.

Deputy La Crosse County administrator Jane Klekamp cited Monday, during a public input session, a month-long public survey to indicate what county taxpayers prefer.

“The highest priority (among the public) has been affordable housing, followed by sustainability and the environment,” Klekamp tells the La Crosse County Board. But the board recently put sustainability as its top priority for federal funding, with housing coming second.

Child care was the No. 3 priority among county leaders, but in the survey, it is ranked fourth behind infrastructure needs, such as fixing highways.

There is still time to fill out the survey (found here), aimed at getting opinions on spending pandemic relief money from the American Rescue Plan Act. The final day is Wednesday and results may be presented to the county board in December.

About 1,400 people have participated so far.

In other county board business, leaders who declared that racism is a public health crisis decided to figure out a mission statement and get expert advice, according to county human resources director Stephen Conrad.

Hiring a consultant to determine future actions to combat racism could be done in the next few weeks. The racism declaration was announced last April.

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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  1. Norman Halderson

    October 12, 2021 at 9:19 am

    The first thing the money should be spent on is infrastructure, #1 being our roads, they are in a sorry state of repair!

    • Stanley Wilson

      October 12, 2021 at 11:53 am

      This board is not interested in anything but their liberal pipe dreams

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