La Crosse Co. Board opposes UW Extension cuts

Members of La Crosse’s County Board are voicing their displeasure with plans to cut more than a million dollars from the UW Extension.

The UW Extension provides access to University of Wisconsin resources to everyone across the state. But as a result of budget cuts, the Extension may be forced to re-organize and consolidate offices across the state.

The move could mean cuts of up to 50% in the areas of agriculture, community resource development, family living, and 4-H.

The County Board unanimously approved a resolution Thursday night opposing those plans.

County Administrator Steve O’Malley says he believes the chancellor of the UW Extension is overreacting and he wishes counties were consulted before decisions were made.

“I think she’s overstating the case. I don’t think it justifies the level of cut she’s proposing, and that’s why our board has gone on the record opposing the cuts and saying engage counties, we can help you deal with the revenue issues that are involved, but it doesn’t deserve to change the entire state system,” said O’Malley.

He says the resolution will be sent to the chancellor of the UW Extension as well as system president Ray Cross and the Board of Regents.