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Bob Nester: How will next mayor respond to the retail challenge?

Bob Nester: How will next mayor respond to the retail challenge?

From the COLLECTION: What are our readers saying? Here are 50 recent letters series

With the final days of the 2021 La Crosse mayor's race upon us, a few observations:

The replies of the candidates at "debates" and to media queries both broadcast and print have been heavy on..lightness.

When asked about various dilemmas, we often hear answers such as "I am open to suggestions," or "we need to fix it." Another heard far too often is, "I am a good listener and am willing to listen."

My favorite non-answer when asked about problem remedies is, "We've got to find a way"

Is La Crosse about to vote for a psychologist or a top city executive?

If the candidates haven't noticed, a sizable number of retail stores have closed up during Mayor Tim Kabat's tenure. K-Mart, 3 Shopkos, Sears, Herberger's, Macy's are the majors accounting for hundreds of lost retail jobs and the incalculable loss of La Crosse's draw as a regional retail hub.

Valley View Mall looks terminally ill. A visit there is enough to depress anyone. But, no mention from the candidates on how to turn this around, as it certainly must to insure La Crosse continuing as a competitive retail center.

When shoppers begin traveling to Eau Claire and Rochester for the retail outing they crave, La Crosse had better step up to regain its shopping luster it once had. How will the next mayor respond to this challenge?

Bob Nester



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