Wisconsin News

City of La Crosse agrees to sell more land to LHI Founder

Deal for parking lot on 2nd and Jay Streets has been in works for years

City of La Crosse agrees to sell more land to LHI Founder

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) - Logistics Health Incorporated could be expanding in downtown La Crosse.

The city council cleared the way in a vote Wednesday.

In a special council meeting, members voted unanimously to allow Weber L-L-C to purchase land downtown. The land is currenly a parking lot on 2nd and Jay streets behind Hooters Restaurant.

The council voted on an agreement that gives the company Don Weber founded until the end of 2015 to exercise an option to buy the land for $750,000.

Mayor Tim Kabat says plans for the purchase have been in the works for years. "The council and the Mayor back at the end of 2012 started these negotiations and so I think through the election and when the new Mayor and new council took office about a year ago, this time last year we started those negotiations and so it's taken some time," said Mayor Kabat.

Part of Weber's deal with the city when he built the current LHI buildings downtown was to create 2,000 jobs. So far he has fallen short.

Wednesday, the council amended those agreements to give Weber until 2016 to reach the 2,000 jobs mark. In exchange, Weber has agreed to pay the city $2.7 million. "With the liquidated damages that are basically agreed to," said Kabat, "Mr. Weber is a man of his word and he is paying those liquidated damages in order to move all of this forward."

Mayor Kabat says he's not exactly sure what Weber is planning for the site, but as part of the agreement Weber would have to guarantee $15 million worth of tax base.

Don Weber founded LHI but has since sold the company. He is currently serving as C-E-O.

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