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La Crosse city committee approves permit for mental health facility, as several citizens oppose the location



Plans for a mental health facility on Jackson Street in La Crosse are getting a mixed reaction at City Hall.

People living near the proposed site for Tellurian Behavioral Health said at a Judiciary and Administration committee meeting Tuesday night that they support the need for a facility but not near their homes.

“I just ask that you all consider if this was gonna happen in your backyard,” neighbor Debra Johnson said. “We certainly do need something here, but maybe they could by the Kmart property, if that doesn’t go through.”

The Tellurian facility is being proposed inside a former dental clinic. The Kmart remark came because it was also on Tuesday’s agenda.

Representatives for Tellurian said the building would not be a drop-in center or a homeless shelter.

The committee voted 4-1 in favor of a conditional use permit for the facility. The full council votes on it next week.

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. Richard Lepsch

    October 4, 2023 at 5:41 am

    So out of your neighborhood and into the Kmart neighborhood…what makes your neighborhood more important , ok to have a mental health place as long as it’s not in my neighborhood …kind of like solar panels farms and windmillfarm just not near me….that is your typical democrat hypocrisy.

    • Jana B.

      October 4, 2023 at 2:14 pm

      I totally agree with you! The thing is is that this person probably already has a neighbor with mental illness and doesn’t even know it. Mental illness doesn’t have one type of face!

    • Dumb Republicans

      October 4, 2023 at 3:55 pm

      Typical right-wing whiners blaming Democrats for EVERYTHING. “Not in my backyard” is a conservative mentality.

    • Pam Welke

      October 4, 2023 at 5:29 pm

      No stay out of my area hate medical they destroyed my life after behavioral killed my husband after they injected him,he died with foot on gas pedal after walking out of behavioral health and bounced off 4 park vehicles with his dead body on the gas pedal stop after hitting a funeral van were the round about is now after his death.keep out of Shelby area .

    • DEBRA Johnson

      October 4, 2023 at 7:11 pm

      Ah. Unless u were there. The Kmart issue was an inside joke to the council members. This facility SHOULD NOT be in ANY residential area.

    • Nichol Bowman

      October 5, 2023 at 12:24 pm

      My thoughts exactly.

  2. Carol Herlitzka

    October 4, 2023 at 8:08 am

    The stupid people are democrats!!!!???? Who’s heads are up there rear end!!!! Common sense ? Where did that go!!!????

    • Elliott Bujan

      October 4, 2023 at 1:29 pm

      Don’t know where politics fall in here. The issue is that nobody wants it in their neighborhood, instead they should propose something instead of rejecting others ideas.
      If they don’t know where, they should not say anything

  3. Alex

    October 4, 2023 at 11:21 am

    Why are these comments foaming at the mouth about democrats? A city committee heard public comments on a mental health facility and this report quotes 1 person voicing a concern. The committee voted in favor of awarding the permit anyhow. Where is this anger coming from?

  4. Kael

    October 4, 2023 at 12:15 pm

    NIMBY is the biggest hurdle to getting people the help they need. So many people say “We need to help those poor people”. Someone comes up with an idea to help. “Well I didn’t mean by where I live.” That is not to say there are legitimate concerns. It is to say quit saying “we” need to help.

  5. Scott Brian Mann

    October 4, 2023 at 3:15 pm

    We say mental health is a huge issue but society does a NIMBY every time when real help is a option

  6. Pam Welke

    October 4, 2023 at 5:19 pm

    All behavioral is doing is using mental patience study guinea pigs my husband was killed right in front back 2018 after being medicated to death he bounced off 4 park vehicles after they gave him an injection of something he was only 61 yeah we don’t want them in our neighborhood either but the mental need a place to stay but not with them studying them like guinea pigs

  7. Manuel Montoya

    October 4, 2023 at 7:28 pm

    Its literally Wisconsin, go and build it in a open land with no one around, mental health is no joke. If no one wants that place near them in lacrosse ur only bet is to go somewhere less crowded.

  8. Bob brown

    October 4, 2023 at 8:17 pm

    Wouldn’t need mental health is our government stops enabling drug addiction

  9. Bob white

    October 4, 2023 at 8:20 pm

    Would not need mental health if our government stops enabling drug addiction

  10. Debra Herrera

    October 5, 2023 at 10:30 am

    I think that the same people who live in the area were the proposed mental health facility may be built. The people in the same area were also against having the old k-mart building be made into a u-haul center. Why are you people so set in your ways. That you all can not have new places that will bring in more jobs.

  11. Anonymous

    October 5, 2023 at 10:41 am

    Agreed hospital medications are a bigger threat

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