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Rollover grant to be used for new meters

Elizabethtown Supervisor Margaret Bartley.

Elizabethtown Supervisor Margaret Bartley. Photo by Katherine Clark.

— The town of Elizabethtown will be afforded improvements for more energy efficient water meters thanks to rollover grant money.

The meter improvements will be funded from remaining funds from the town’s Capital Water project that was completed in 2006.

Recently, the state comptroller’s office informed the town it had a remaining balance of $521,000 left on the grant for the Capital Improvement Project, according to Elizabethtown Supervisor Margaret Bartley. After reviewing the project, it was discovered the final step to repair and/or replace broken meters, had never been completed.

“We can do this at no cost to the town because of our remaining balance for the grant awarded to us for this project that was completed in 2006,” Bartley said.

Water District Superintendent, Dave Dickinson, said the once the water meters are read in April, the town can say what homes need new meters.

“The majority of the funding will go to replacing older meters with the new meters,” Dickinson said. “We won’t know until after we do the reading in April how many meters we’ll need.”

Dickinson said by replacing the meters, it sets the town up to be in compliance with state mandates that will go into effect by 2014 requiring all brass water meters to be replaced with composit meters. The older brass meters have proven to allow heavy metal deposits in the drinking water that the new meters will not.

“The new meters will improve energy efficiently and safety of our water,” Bartley said.

The grant will save the town money by taking the financial burden of purchasing and instalation of the meters, and it will also save the community money by guaranteeing any building that may not currently have a meter will be paying for the correct amount of water used.

Anyone who does not have a meter on their home currently pays a flat rate for water consumption. Dickinson said the new meters will be able to determine the exact amount of water used in a home and can also determine if a home has a pipe leak or if the home is using an unnecessary amount of water, inevitably saving the homeowner as well.

“Once these meters are running, everyone will be paying their fair share for water,” Bartley.

Once the water department has compiled the number of new meters needed, the town can put out a RFP for contractors. Bartley said this will be a great improvement for the town and it will be good to complete this process.

“I think that is going to be fantastic because it should have been done and now it will be done,” Bartley said.

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