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Steve O'Malley's future as La Crosse County administrator is in the hands of a county ethics board...
Members of that board held a two-hour hearing today, to decide whether O'Malley violated ethics rules by supporting the campaign for a La Crosse city administrator. An attorney for critics who filed the ethics complaint says O'Malley is not allowed to participate in a political campaign of any sort on work time. O'Malley argues that much of his job, finding ways to benefit the county, is political. The plaintiffs want O'Malley to be found guilty, and be ordered to pay fines or be fired. The board has not indicated whether it will make a ruling today.
Midway through the season, the La Crosse Loggers are flying high, securing the first half pennant in the Northwoods league. After the season, things might get more interesting. The city and the Loggers recently agreed to a lease extension for Copeland Park so the team can continue playing there next season. Negotiations for an agreement to go beyond that likely will begin after the current season is over. Meanwhile, nothing has been firmed up about the possibility of the UWL baseball team using the park as their home field. A partnership between the Loggers and UWL was announced this spring, but the city would have to approve and has yet to discuss an arrangement with the university.
The La Crosse city council will have two appointed representatives before long. Applications are now being accepted to fill the seat resigned by Jim Bloedorn this week. Bloedorn could no longer hold the seat after moving out of the seventh district. The successful applicant will serve out the remainder of Bloedorn's term until April. In May, college freshman Karen Svitovsky was appointed to the fifth district seat on the council to take the seat resigned by Eric Schmidt. Her term also expires next April. Applications for the seventh district seat will be accepted until the 23rd of this month.
There's going to many taxpayers who don't warm to the idea of spending big money on a consultant to help the city of La Crosse find cost savings. Nevertheless, says city council member Andrea Richmond, it should be done. And she's not the only who feels that way. She says the idea gets brought up by the city's auditor on an annual basis
The city could spend six figures on an efficiency consultant. The city council's finance committee voted this week to approve the consultant.
Change of plans, for anyone who might want to visit the Salvation Army 'cooling center' in La Crosse tonight...
The county health department tells us that there are technical problems at the Salvation Army, so a different site will be used...14th and Pine, at the United Campus Ministry. There will be cots for about 20 people there. It's not known yet whether a cooling center will be needed again for Friday night.
You are expected to bring bedding and personal medications. NO PETS are allowed. All visitors will be screened with a breathalyzer test.