New era begins for La Crosse Common Council

New Common Council Members Sworn In

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) - It's the start of a new era at La Crosse's City Hall.

The seven new members of the city's common council and six returning members were sworn in on Tuesday afternoon, as the council officially trimmed down from 17 members to 13.

There's also a new council president after previous president Dick Swantz decided not to run for re-election. Martin Gaul was elected as the new head of the council, defeating newcomer Barb Janssen by a 10-to-3 vote among council members.

Gaul says a big part of his job will be making sure the transition to the new council format goes smoothly.

"My initial concern is with the council itself. The reduction to 13 members from 17 is definitely new for us, and it'll be real interesting to see how that works out as far as all the new people that are here," said Gaul.

"I think all in all it's going to work out pretty well, it's going to take a little while for everyone to get used to the new system, but once we do, we will move forward with the mayor and do the best we can by the citizens of the city."

The new common council will return to the chamber for an organizational meeting later this month, before holding their next full meeting on May 11th.

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