The first in a series of forums tied to challenges facing communities and local governments in Wisconsin will be held 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. April 14 at the UW-La Crosse Lunda Center, 319 7th St. North.

Convened by the Seven Rivers Alliance and Competitive Wisconsin Inc, the topic for the first “Wisconsin Tomorrow” forum will be early care and education. Co-hosts are UW-La Crosse, Western Technical College and the Wisconsin Counties Association. Registration will open soon.

Prefaced by a series of focus groups and other information-gathering efforts, the rest of the series will focus on broadband access; housing; transportation; energy; health care; rural resurgence; and community quality of life and opportunity.

Addressing challenges in those areas could help businesses and local governments recruit and retain the workforce needed to support and grow the economy; to pay for essential public services; and to better secure the future.

Organizers believe federal dollars released through the American Rescue Plan Act can be invested in the eight areas identified for “Wisconsin Tomorrow,” especially to help attract and retain workers and strengthen communities. About 15 speakers will be a part of April 14 panel discussions.

Sponsors are American Family Insurance, Gundersen Health System and Dairyland Power Cooperative.