La Crosse City Council approves raise for mayor’s position

The La Crosse City Council approved Thursday night an $8,000 raise for the mayor’s position.

Current Mayor Tim Kabat makes around $77,000 a year.

The council believes the raise is necessary because Kabat is not only the mayor, he’s also acting as a city administrator.

La Crosse City Council member Doug Happel said a study of 18 similarly sized cities in Wisconsin showed him the salary for the mayor of La Crosse was below average.

“So I thought let’s just raise it to the median, which is essentially $80,000 and it sends the message of the importance of the position,” the District 15 council representative said.

Mayor Kabat has said the raise isn’t necessary and called his current salary adequate. “When I look around the community, even with all the strong growth that’s happening, the economy is growing, we’re seeing job creation and all that, there’s still a lot of people out there that aren’t getting significant pay raises.”

The salary increase wouldn’t take effect until 2017, after the next mayoral election.