After presidential campaign visits left the La Crosse Police Department with unpaid invoices three years later, the department will require presidential campaigns to provide 50% of payments for anticipated expenses up front during this election cycle.

The police department charges campaigns to offset the cost of overtime for officers and supervisors required during the visits. The department announced its intention to ask for half of the estimated bill prior to each visit Tuesday after noting three unpaid invoices adding up to more than $10,000 from the 2016 campaign season.

“The implication of having $10,000-plus of unexpected overtime expenses can cripple a budget that we have worked hard to maintain. Ultimately, we want to ensure that city taxpayers are not stuck footing the bill for presidential campaign visits; especially considering the millions of dollars these campaigns raise,” Assistant Chief Rob Abraham said.

Mike Pence mug


Trump mug


Paul Ryan mug


The three unpaid invoices include a $225 bill dated Dec. 31, 2016, to the Speaker Paul Ryan Bus Tour; a $3,595.25 bill dated Sept. 28, 2017, to the Donald J. Trump for President campaign for a rally by Vice President Mike Pence; and a $6,308.93 bill dated Sept. 16, 2016, to the Donald J. Trump for President campaign for his Aug. 15-16, 2016, campaign visit.

Sgt. Tom Walsh stressed that the new billing policy isn’t partisan, saying the department likes working with any campaign, regardless of party affiliation, to keep everyone safe and provide a forum for a dialogue.

“We like having them. We’re going to do everything we can to have a safe environment for all of our political campaigns. It’s an honor to have them in La Crosse. We just need them to understand there’s a cost associated with that for our local taxpayers,” Walsh said.

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With the 2020 presidential election ramping up, the La Crosse Police Department is prepared to provide security; although it does include significant stress on city resources.

The department knows that La Crosse has become a destination for presidential candidates in the past 20 years, said Walsh, and it wanted to be transparent with potential visitors.

“We don’t want this to be a surprise to anybody when these campaigns start coming to La Crosse,” Walsh said.

The department has sent notices of its policy to the county and state Democrat and Republican parties and encouraged party representatives to contact it with any questions.

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Jourdan Vian can be reached at jvian@lacrossetribune.com or follow her on Twitter at @Jourdan_LCT.



Jourdan Vian is a reporter and columnist covering crime and courts for the La Crosse Tribune. You can contact her at 608-791-8218 or jvian@lacrossetribune.com.

(29) comments


Typical RetRumplican comments posted here. tRump is a well known con-man deadbeat. Numerous bankruptcies, a fraudulent tRump University of which he lost BIGLY in a class action lawsuit. He bankrupted a casino....how can a casino go bankrupt? It was actually a money laundering operation which house of cards collapsed. When Bernie Sanders visited the area in 2016, his campaign prepaid for everything in Onalaska. Hillary's primary visit owes no money. All that are documented here are the greedy deadbeat Grand Old Pricks.


All should pay or get no services!

Uncle Harry

I was at the Trump rally at the La Crosse Center and there was zero "antifa" activity. The only protesters I saw stood on the other side of 2nd street and they were very respectful in their objections. La Crosse police did an excellent job ensuring this rally went off without a hitch. And I could NOT be more ashamed of this President or any politician for that matter, who shirks their responsibilities by stiffing the tax payer, and disrespecting our officers.


The WI Dem primary is in April. We'll see how many of these clowns show up in La Crosse when they find out their campaign is strictly "cash in advance."




Yeah, see if Trump shows up. He has a well documented history of stiffing taxpayers for his security details and everything else.


Paul Ryan? His entire campaign wasn't worth $225.

Overall, seems like a fair policy.

From a political standpoint, this will hurt the Dems more than Trump. Trump has almost unlimited campaign contributions.

And of course, Eliz Warren, being chairman of the "gimme, gimme" a free lunch crowd, will have trouble paying her bills.


Grow up Feehan.


I love the free lunch argument. It's so antiquated that it immediately dates the commenter. Ok Boomer.


Are you saying that anything can be free? Because, that's impossible. Nothing is free.


The Orange Carcass ain"t paying jack sh___. He:s above the law and he can grab pu___ ,"cos he"s famous.


Sen Joe Morrissey (D) was just elected in VA. In 2014, he was convicted of having sex with a 17 year old, and had nude pictures of her on his phone. Will you also be calling for him to be impeached and labeling him as a "p***y grabber?

No, you won't. Because you are a hypocrite.



What about Republican Congressman Duncan Hunter? He's a total creep. What about Dennis Hastert? There are creeps on both sides. The point is which party cares about the common man and which party doesn't. Democrats try to do what is best for everyday people. Republicans make no effort to do so.


Sounds like we are getting by pretty lucky compared to other cities:

El Paso, Texas: $569,000 for a February rally

Minneapolis, Minnesota: $530,000 for an October 10 rally

Albuquerque, New Mexico: $211,000 for an October rally

Tucson, Arizona: $82,000 for a March 2016 rally

Spokane, Washington: $65,000 for a May 2016 rally



Crooked Hillary also stiffed several Wisconsin cities during her non-campaign.


Crooked a Trump For Prison!


Now that this has been approved, Mrs. Clinton or whomever visits won't have the opportunity. Thank you city leaders!!!


As the jack-azz mayor of Minneapolis found out, if the president wants to come to your city, there is not much you can do about it, paid bills or not.


Redwall enjoys his/her/they tax money being wasted by outsiders.


Exactly, as long as they have an R behind their name.


I think the democrats should have to pay these bills. If they weren't so violent, security wouldn't be needed.


Heather Heyer was not a Republican. If she were still alive, she would beg to differ.

Mr Wizard

Ya got that right, Veridic. Cities are using cops as an excuse to make money. Who ever said we need all these cops anyway? Aren't these cops employed anyway? Antifa thugs are the reason violence happens at any political event as far as I can see. Bill them.


The Democrats on this website dont pay bills. They want you to pay their bills.


Go back to school.


I pay my bills. On time. Every month. Do you??


Redwall, I mean Redsweater Bill Feehan, you never matured much post adolescence, it appears. You brag about not paying for your LaX Tribune subscription, yet come on here to mock and denigrate those that do with no facts or intelligent talking points. Your credibility is zilch, $0 - nothing. Go slither back under your slimy rock.


Right. Nice comment little man Redball.


Go back to school.


The *policy* is nonpartisan, but you'll notice the "not paying bills" breaks down on pretty partisan lines.

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