Pay for Next Mayor Cut in Half Depending on Spring Vote
At this point, the job description for the next mayor of La Crosse is kind of vague. He or she will still have a veto pen. Will still lead city council meetings. Can still make appointments. And those mayoral proclamations will never go out of style. After that, it gets a little fuzzy. Depends on whether voters approve hiring a city administrator through a binding referendum in April. That would change the job description of the mayor. It would also change the pay. After a final city council vote last night, the next mayor's pay would get cut in half if the administrator is okayed. Current mayor Matt Harter could still vote the pay cut. And he might; he's adamantly opposed to the idea of hiring a city administrator.
Freedom Fest Bringing Two Big Name Bands
This year will mark the 5th anniversary of the LHI Freedom Fest in La Crosse. And the entertainment lined up is keeping in line with bands booked in the past. The event is June 16th at the UW-L Veterans memorial Field Sports Complex and after a Freedom Fest motorcycle ride, the 451st Army band and local band the Remainders....the night will be filled with music from Foreigner and The Steve Miller Band. In the past 4 years, the Freedom Fest, has raised close to $300 thousand and out of that.....$80 thousand has gone for scholarships to veterans. 100% of the proceeds have benefited veteran's causes including the Veterans Hall Of Honor at UW-L. Tickets for the event go on sale April 13th and you can choose grandstand seating.....lawn seating.....and two different V.I.P. seating arrangements. The fee for the 3 hour motorcycle ride is $25. The website for more info is freedom fest lacrosse dot com.
Budget Bill Republican Side
(AP) Gov. Scott Walker says no emergency budget repair bill will be needed to deal with a projected $143 million shortfall. The nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau released the new estimate Thursday.
As recently as October the state was projected to have a $73 million surplus. Walker didn't detail what he would do to deal with the projected shortfall next year, other than promising not to raise taxes. The Fiscal Bureau says the Walker administration is looking at debt refinancing and restructuring to deal with the shortfall. Republican legislative leaders issued a joint statement saying Wisconsin is not immune to the bad economy and defended their past actions and promises not to raise taxes.
No Child No More In Minnesota
(AP) Minnesota Education Commissioner Brenda Cassellius went to Washington for President Barack Obama's announcement that 10 states including Minnesota are being freed of the strict and sweeping requirements of the No Child Left Behind education law. In exchange for the waivers, the 10 states have come up with alternative plans for improving the way schools teach and evaluate students. Gov. Mark Dayton says in a statement that the waiver will allow Minnesota administrators, teachers and parents to work together in building a new system of school accountability, which will lead to better education for the state's children. In the same statement, Cassellius says this waiver will help Minnesota address its achievement gap, which is one of the widest in the country, and create an educational system that better serves every student.
Budget Bill Democratic Side
(AP) The Democratic leader of the Wisconsin state Assembly says a new projection showing Wisconsin faces a $143 million budget shortfall illustrates irresponsible action by Gov. Scot Walker.
Assembly Minority Leader Peter Barca issued the statement Thursday in reaction to the new estimates from the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau. Barca says Walker's policies have left Wisconsin fiscally unsound and caused the state to fall behind on the road to economic recovery. Barca says Walker's economic plan isn't working. Walker views the new figures differently, saying he believes the state is headed in the right direction after Republicans made tough budget choices last year to balance a $3.6 billion shortfall. Barca is considering running against Walker in a recall election.