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UW-La Crosse chancellor kicks off year with staff, announces many will get bonuses for work during pandemic

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This could be the most normal start to a fall semester at UW-La Crosse since 2019.

University chancellor Joe Gow presided over a start-of-the-year meeting for staffers at Main Hall on Wednesday, thanking them for all they’ve done to get through two years of a pandemic.

Gow said one way of showing thanks is financially, with a 1 percent bonus being authorized for employees who were on the UW-L staff before July of this year.

“We’re the only campus within the entire UW System, including Madison, that did not need to do furloughs, and that took money away from people,” Gow said, “and also, we had very minimal layoffs, and we’re very proud of that.”

The staff bonuses will be provided in two parts — one in December and one in March — to spread out the tax liability.

Gow said it was “really, really nice” to be back to a more normal campus schedule for the fall, but he feels the pandemic is not completely done.

“Obviously, we cannot say, job accomplished, COVID’s over, you know, whoopee!” Gow said.

Students will move into the dorms through Saturday, with classes beginning Tuesday.

New admissions this year at UW-L exceed 2,300, as the university set a record for incoming freshmen for the second consecutive year.

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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