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DNS Environmental Services List

Specific information relative to the following programs can be obtained by calling 286-3280. If you want to make a service request or a complaint, call the DNS Complaint Intake line at (414) 286-2268. A Department of Neighborhood Services Employee will take the information and keep the complainants name confidential. Here is a summary of what the Environmental Section handles and what is needed to make a proper complaint. The direct number is listed where possible.

For all complaints, pleast include the name, address, and phone number of the complainant along with a description of the violation and address of the location where the violation is occuring. 


Removal of asbestos-containing materials must be performed by trained, State of Wisconsin certified individuals. In many instances, depending on the amount of material being removed, a permit is required. If you see anyone who is removing or disposing of materials that you may believe to be asbestos (such as pipe insulation and certain types of siding), or need information relative to obtaining a permit, you should call 286-3280. See link for permit application info: DNS-185 Environmental permit.pdf

FILLING STATIONS (Chapter 84-45)

The City Clerk's Office issues annual operating licenses for all public filling stations. Inspections are conducted in conjunction with the issuance of the license. The inspection encompasses fire safety, sanitation and the storage, handling and use of hazardous chemicals. City Clerk's Office issues the License: (414)286-2238. A DNS-Commerical Section handled the inspections for the permits. (414) 286-3874.  Additionally, inspections are made relative to complaints about the above items. Any service request complaints should be directed to DNS Complaint Hot-line at (414) 286-2268. (NOTE: Food sales also require licenses and permits within filling stations. Milwaukee Health Department handles that at (414) 286-3521.

NUISANCE NOISE (Chapter 80-60 thru 80-74)

What are Noise Complaints?

Citizens may call in and complain about loud noise. Types of noises may include loud music, air conditioners, any type of mechanical noise, factory noises, etc. Noise complaints only handled by the Police Department include vehicular noises (while on a public right-of-way) and disturbing of the peace issues (boisterous individuals, fighting etc.). Certain noises are exempt from the regulations, such as air traffic and railroads. A temporary noise variance can be obtained for construction projects or festivals or other similar events which may have a tendency to exceed the noise limits. If someone would like to make a complaint, they should call 286-2268. Please contact 286-3280 for more information or visit:

NUISANCE LIGHT (Chapter 80-19)
Citizens may call in to complain about bright lights that may be causing them discomfort or are bothering them in some way. In order to correct this situation, the citizen must submit a written petition/letter to the Nuisance and Environmental Health Section. Calls can be forwarded to 286-3280 for clarification or if further information is required.

Recycling, Salvaging, and Towing (Chapter 93-49)
This is handled by the City Clerk's Office.  It is illegal to dispose of waste tires in the City of Milwaukee by placing them in the green garbage carts , using trash dumpsters or throwing them on vacant lots. Citizens are allowed to take up to 5 at a time to any of the City's Self-Help Stations at no cost. Businesses that generate more than 25 or transport more than 5 (at a time) waste tires in the City are required to have annual licenses to operate.

All Dry-cleaning establishments (facilities where dry-cleaning is done on site) are required to obtain annual operating permits. The permit period is February 1 thru January 31. Questions related to these facilities should be directed to 286-3280.

Self service laundromats are inspected annually and upon complaints. An annual registration is required by the City Clerk's office. The registration period is February 1 thru January 31. Calls should be directed to 286-2238.

CAMPGROUNDS (Chapter 64)
A license is issued to one campground (State Fair Park) annually by the Environmental Division. License information requests should be directed to 286-5771.

BACKYARD POOLS (Chapter 75-20)
A construction permit is required for swimming pools equal to or greater than 15 ft x 3 ft in size. An application with a sketch and fee is submitted for review. An inspection of the area where the pool is to be placed is conducted prior to construction. Along with requirements of placement near lot lines and climbable structures, there may be electrical, plumbing, and fencing permit issues that may need to be looked at by other sections. Any nuisances such as draining pools onto neighboring properties or dirty, stagnant water should be referred to the complaint hot line. Requests for pool construction permit applications should be directed to 286-3280 or downloaded from DNS SWIMMING POOL Information Packet and Permit Application. 

All public swimming places are inspected and licensed annually. Periodic inspections are made throughout the year to check items such as pool chemistry levels, safety concerns, sanitation of the facility, record keeping, etc. All new construction of pools requires a plan review and construction permit. The annual license runs July 1 thru June 30.

All massage establishments are licensed and inspected annually for code compliance. The license is issued by the City Clerk's Office. Requests for license information should be directed to 286-2238.

LITTER and/or improper disposal (Chapter 79)
All service requests related to litter on commercial properties or vacant lots as well as those related to the dumping or improper storage of oil or other automotive fluids should be sent to 286-2268.

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