Kabat and council looking forward to working together

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LA CROSSE, Wis. (WEAU) -- Members of one area city council hope their new mayor elect works with them to make improvements, after butting heads with the current mayor regularly.

Mayor Elect Tim Kabat and some members of the La Crosse City
Council are looking forward to working together.

Kabat said his first order of business will be to sit down and talk about his and the council’s plans for the city.

“It’s not going to change overnight, but I think that’s how you build relationships is on a daily basis, working very hard and working together and then I think over time you’ll see the positives from that,” said Kabat.

Kabat said he’ll take an active role during council meetings, which council members are happy about.

“This issue of working with the council is a very important issue, and I’m convinced he has the right skills to get that together,” said Council member Dick Swantz.

Council members said they’ll look to Kabat for leadership, guidance and input.

Some council members said Mayor Matt Harter didn’t have that.

They said they were willing to work with Mayor Matt Harter, but didn’t agree with some of his philosophies.

“The main thing is that you know we’re going to be unified and that we’re going to be working together for the betterment of the city,” said Council member Francis Formanek.

But Harter said the city has accomplished a lot in the last four years.

He also said the council worked well with the mayor’s office.

“I think we’ve had a very successful past four years here in the city of La Crosse and look forward to another successful four years and beyond with our new Mayor Elect Tim Kabat,” said Harter.

Kabat said he views his new role as a leader for the whole city.

He also said one benefit of the mayor’s job is being elected from every ward, and not just one.

“I get to speak on behalf of all the citizens of La Crosse and you gain that level of trust by being an active participant,” said Kabat.

Kabat will be sworn in as Mayor on April 16th.

Kabat said once he becomes mayor he’ll leave his position as executive director of Downtown Main Street.

He also said there will be an interim executive director until a new one is found.