Ministry of the
Solicitor General

OFM - 04-10-12

Steps in Establishing a Jointly Managed and Operated Fire Department

Public Fire Safety Guidelines

Subject Coding

PFSG 04-10-12


Emergency Response


January 1998


Steps in Establishing a Jointly Managed and Operated Fire Department


Under Review


To identify the recommended steps to be followed when establishing a jointly managed and operated fire department.

Recommended Steps:


  • Each participating municipality pass an agreed-to-by-law to establish a fire department.
  • Each by-law should be practically identical, except for the by-law number and name of municipality.  


  • Each participating municipality pass a by-law appointing the individual who will serve as the chief of the fire department.  

Note: The Office of the Fire Marshal recommends that a separate and distinct by-law be passed appointing the deputy fire chief of the department.  


  • Each participating municipality pass a by-law to establish a board and to provide for the joint management and operation of the fire department.


  • An agreement be negotiated between all participating municipalities with mutually agreeable terms.
  • Consideration of population, assessment, number of fires and type of construction may be considered.
  • Individual municipalities participating in the jointly operated fire department may have unique needs that do not apply to the other municipalities.
  • The individual municipalities can provide for these unique needs in addition to the general coverage.


Each participating municipality pass a by-law to authorize the fire department to participate in the mutual aid plan  

STEP 6 (Optional)

Fire chief may be appointed as a building inspector with defined duties and responsibilities under the Building Code by the authority having jurisdiction.

Codes, Standards, and Best Practices:

Codes, Standards and Best Practices resources available to assist in establishing local policy on this assessment are listed below. All are available at . Please feel free to copy and distribute this document. We ask that the document not be altered in any way, that the Office of the Fire Marshal be credited and that the documents be used for non-commercial purposes only.

• Municipal Act

• Fire Protection and Prevention Act

See also PFSG
04-09-12 Fire Protection Agreements
04-11-12 Draft Agreement to Jointly Manage and Operate a Fire Dept
04-12-13 Core Services
04-64-12 Communications Centre/Resource Centre