City of La Crosse celebrates 40 years of Community Block Grants

More than $30 million used in La Crosse

Millions of dollars have been invested in job creation and neighborhood revitalization in La Crosse.

On Tuesday, the success of the federal grants that helped make it possible was celebrated.

The Community Development Block grants were first handed out 40 years ago.

It’s federal money given out at a local level with the goal of making the quality of life better for low and middle income families.

More than 30 million dollars has been put to use in La Crosse.

“It’s helped to create hundreds of jobs, it’s helped to create millions of dollars of tax base, it has served thousands of people with low or moderate income households, and it’s really made, I think, the connection between housing and economic development and neighborhood improvement,” said Mayor Tim Kabat.

Five organizations were recognized Tuesday for their outstanding use of the grant.

One of those is the Boys and Girls Club which has used some of the money to expand programming for teenagers.

It’s being recognized for an innovative approach to building community.

“Not why we do what we do, but we’re a small piece of this big puzzle of solving some of the issues of this neighborhood and we just want to be part of that solution,” said the Exec. Dir. of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater La Crosse Mike Desmond.

Others recognized were Western Technical College, the People’s Food Co-Op, the Kane Street Community Garden, and Authenticom.