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Planning continues for SAFER fire district ahead of January 1st starting date


RIB MOUNTAIN, Wis. (WSAU) -- Planning continues in Rib Mountain and Weston as the starting date for their new fire district nears.

The new SAFER fire district is scheduled to start January first, and is a combination of the Weston and Rib Mountain fire departments. Weston Administrator Dan Guild says there's still some paperwork to shuffle around before that date. "We will continue to iron out procedures and policies. There's a number of items with federal and state government that need to be converted over to the new system."

The district has been holding a series of meetings to that end over the past few months. Guild says there's groundwork that needs to be in place before the starting date. "Whenever you're building a new department between multiple members from scratch, there's always some extra paperwork you need to shuffle around and get taken care of."

Guild expects that residents will not notice a difference in service after the First, either. "January first, the district becomes active. That means we will still have a combination of full-time and part-time, paid on-call professions that will be staffed at both stations." The district will also be honoring all contracts with the neighboring municipalities that had been in place for both Weston and Rib Mountain.

Initial estimates say the combined district could save both municipalities around $30,000 a year, with more savings possible if other municipalities join in.