Representatives from the City of La Crosse and the Town of Shelby came together on Friday afternoon to announce that a boundary agreement has been reached.
After decades of give and take and more than two years of negotiations, the two parties have come to an agreement that La Crosse Mayor Tim Kabat calls "once in a generation." The goal of agreement is to bring more growth, development, and tax-base to southern La Crosse County.
The new agreement opens doors for possible partnerships with nature trails, school enrollment, and a library.
After the years of court cases and disputes over land ownership, both parties agree that this is a win-win situation.
"It is now going to give the developers the piece of mind knowing that now they can move forward, and they know how the City of La Crosse and the Town of Shelby are going to act and give them the opportunity to develop their property either in the Town of Shelby or in the City of La Crosse," said Tim Candahl with the Town of Shelby. "So, this is a huge win for the landowners in this area."
Mayor Kabat said that he plans to use the template of this agreement to work with surrounding communities such as Campbell, Onalaska, and La Crescent. He sees a potential opportunities for more revenue sharing through cooperation between La Crosse and other area municipalities.
An informational meeting will take place on November 7 at Central High school there residents of Shelby and La Crosse will be able to make comments and ask questions on the agreement.
After the meeting, the agreement will go before both the La Crosse Planning Commission and Shelby Planning Commission for approval in a joint meeting. Then, the La Crosse Common Council and Shelby Town Board will need to ratify it before getting final approval from the state.
Both parties hope to have the agreement in place by the beginning of next year.