The La Crosse airport is going to provide most of its own fire protection in the new year, instead of relying on the city fire department.
That change has been approved as a cost-cutting measure by a city council committee, with the full council expected to take a vote next week.
The contract between the fire department and the airport expired at year’s end.
Fire Chief Ken Gilliam says it was mainly a matter of saving money, and airport director Ian Turner says other cities in the region do the same thing.
“Most of our regional airports in central Wisconsin, and down I-90 in Rochester, this is how they staff their firefighting duties,” said Turner.
The change could allow the fire department to devote more resources to pandemic response.