Now, more than ever, communities need to work together to effectively deliver their services. In an era of increasingly constrained budgets, partnering is an imperative. We must collaborate.
That is why I’m proud to announce the South Milwaukee Common Council has passed an intergovernmental agreement to allow us to provide public health services to the City of St. Francis.
The St. Francis Common Council approved the agreement on Tuesday.
The three-year deal, effective Feb. 1, is positive for both sides and builds on our already strong relationship with our neighbors, including our work on the Environmental Health Consortium.
- For us, we gain a full-time equivalent employee to help us deliver our wide array of public health services and programming, including education, immunization, clinic services and code enforcement. It also adds capacity for emergencies. The deal also brings additional revenue opportunities to us, as we will now collect grant dollars and fees that would have flowed to St. Francis.
- For St. Francis, it expands the amount of services and programming available to their residents, and alleviates concerns raised with the retirement early next year of their public health administrator and nurse. (Indeed, concerns over filling open positions in this increasingly tight labor market may drive more of these kinds of discussions in coming months and years.)
The deal also makes sense financially. The partnership is essentially budget neutral for both parties, as St. Francis will pay South Milwaukee between $6,700 and $7,387 per month, or about $84,000 per year.
I want to thank South Milwaukee Health Administrator Jacqueline Ove and City Administrator Tami Mayzik for driving this on our end, and St. Francis city leaders for being so open to this common-sense consolidation. These deals are not easy, and it took many hours to get this to the finish line.
My pledge: We will not stop here when it comes to working with our neighbors. This is only the start.