Organization & Funding Discussions

Press Conference - January 10, 2022, 1 p.m.

On January 10, 2022 at 1 p.m. the City of Milton and the Towns of Milton, Harmony, Johnstown, and Lima held a press conference at the Milton Fire Department to announce their intent to file a petition with the Edgerton Fire Protection District and provide additional information about the Intergovernmental Agreement that was approved between the five municipalities.  Below is a link to the Fact Sheet provided at the press conference and a link to the City's YouTube channel to view the press conference:


On July 15, 2020 and July 30,2020 the Joint Fire Commission for the Milton-Milton Township Fire Department heard presentations from Fire Chief Ernie Rhodes and City of Milton Finance Director / Treasurer Dan Nelson about organization and funding options for the fire department. Two scenarios were presented: Consolidation with Janesville or a Standalone Department.  

At the Common Council meeting on August 18, 2020 staff summarized the presentations that were given to the Joint Fire Commission.  They also answered questions regarding the two scenarios and how those pertain specifically to the City.

At the joint meeting of the City of Milton Common Council and Town of Milton Board on August 19, 2020 the two governing bodies discussed the two scenarios that were presented to the Joint Fire Commission.  At the meeting, the direction was to continue exploration of consolidation with the City of Janesville.

Discussions on funding and operations of the department continued at the Joint Fire Commission meetings on September 3, 2020, September 24, 2020, October 21, 2020, November 18, 2020, and December 9, 2020.  At the December 9, 2020 meeting, the Joint Fire Commission voted to pursue consolidation with the City of Janesville.

The Joint Fire Commission continued discussions on consolidation with the City of Janesville into 2021.  On March 8, 2021, the Town of Milton indicated they are seeking negotiations with the Edgerton Fire District and other municipalities.

At the March 16, 2021 Common Council meeting, the Common Council approved a motion to move forward with consolidations with the City of Janesville unilaterally.

The Common Council held a special meeting on Tuesday, March 30, 2021, to discuss next steps.  The Common Council approved directing staff to do further analysis on the standalone model and the unilateral model.

On April 7, 2021, the Common Council approved working with the Wisconsin Policy Forum on an analysis of Fire and EMS.  On July 6, 2021, the Common Council heard a presentation from the Wisconsin Policy Forum and reviewed the final report.  More information is available below, including links to the presentation and report.

The Common Council heard a presentation from Chief Randy Pickering of the Edgerton Fire Protection District on July 15, 2021.  The video of the meeting and the presentation document are both linked below.

On September 21, 2021, the Common Council directed the City Administration to begin discussions with the Edgerton Fire Protection District about potential membership within the District.

The Common Council approved a Request for Proposals (RFP) for a Communications Consultant for Public Safety Referendum on October 5, 2021.  The proposals were due back to the City of Milton on November 3, 2021.  The two firms who submitted proposals presented to the Council on December 7, 2021.

On November 23, 2021, the City of Milton had initial discussions with 5-Bugles on a Space Needs Analysis.  On December 21, 2021, 5-Bugles presented a preliminary Space Needs Analysis for consideration.

The five municipalities - City of Milton and the Towns of Milton, Harmony, Lima, and Johnstown - came together on December 15, 2021 and approved the petition to join the Edgerton Fire Protection District and the Intergovernmental Agreement between the five municipalities.

Wisconsin Policy Forum Analysis

The Common Council approved at their meeting on April 7, 2021 to enter into an agreement with the Wisconsin Policy Forum to complete an analysis of two key issues related to the fire and EMS services for the City of Milton:

  1. Evaluation of the “Unilateral Consolidation Model” and the “City of Milton Stand Alone Model” developed by Milton officials and considered by its council on March 31, 2021. Included in the evaluation would be review and possible refinement of the preliminary staffing and service assumptions used by city officials to develop the respective models; review and possible refinement of the city’s fiscal analysis of the two models; consideration of whether other viable staffing and service options or sub-options may exist for the city (including fiscal analysis of such options); and pros and cons associated with each option.
  2. Analysis of possible equitable cost allocation methodologies for 1) the consolidation model; and 2) the stand-alone model under scenarios in which the townships currently served by the Milton department, some subset of those townships, or other jurisdictions ultimately wish to receive service under that model.

The agreement with the Wisconsin Policy Forum is available on the City's website to view.  The analysis will be paid for completely by the City of Milton.

The report was presented to the Common Council at their meeting on July 6, 2021.  All of the documents from the meeting are available online:

Fire Department Studies


Meeting Videos on YouTube:

2022 Budget