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While La Crosse committees don’t agree in allowing “ADUs,” Mayor Reynolds sees them as a positive and economist Hoffer says they’re a no brainer

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If you were to look at how two city committees voted last week in an ordinance change to allow Accessory Dwelling Units, or ADUs, in La Crosse, you wouldn’t put your money on the council voting yes at its Thursday meeting.

La Crosse Mayor Mitch Reynolds wants to see it happened, but what the Judiciary & Administration committee did last week, in deferring the legislation for 60 days, also seemed to be the Mayor’s take earlier this week on La Crosse Talk PM.


La Crosse Talk PM airs weekdays at 5:06 p.m. Listen on the WIZM app, online here, or on 92.3 FM / 1410 AM / 106.7 FM (north of Onalaska). Find all the podcasts here or subscribe to La Crosse Talk PM wherever you get your podcasts.


“There’s a lot of different considerations for all of these things, but at the end of the day, the concept is, ‘Well how do we create more density? And how do we help solve for a housing crisis?’ And, this is one of those ways. So, if we can get it right, I think it’ll work. But we have to get it right.”

While the J&A deferred the decision, the city plan commission voted 5-3 against allowing property owners convert unattached buildings into living spaces.

Local economist Adam Hoffer on La Crosse Talk PM said Thursday this was a no brainer for bringing more people into the city.

“I absolutely love ADUs and having additional units on your property in which other people can live is probably the best, maybe second only to changing some of the zoning rules,” Hoffer said. “But allowing people to add ADUs to their property will single handedly bring more units, well, more people to live in the city than almost any other policy that I can think of.”



Hoffer, the director of excise tax policy at the nonprofit, Tax Foundation, noted that people’s budgets are tight. Things are expensive. And there are a lot of garages out there that could be converted into living spaces, and possibly be rented out.

Host of WIZM's La Crosse Talk PM | University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point graduate | Hometown: Greenville, Wis | Avid noonball basketball player and sand volleyballer in La Crosse

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