Water meter project on track for May completion, mayor say

Published 11:10 am Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Ironton’s water meter replacement project is on schedule for completion in May 2012, Mayor Rich Blankenship said Friday.

Workers from Southern Ohio Trenching, which the city contracted for the job, have completed water meter installations in residences in the north end of town, Blankenship said. They will move to south Ironton before installing meters at businesses, the mayor said.

In August, a resident complained to Ironton City Council that the worker who installed his meter had been shocked and a fuse was blown during the installation process.

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Blankenship said Friday that the city had not received any more complaints about electrical problems relating to the installation.

The Ironton City Council OK’d the $1.4 million project in May. Approximately $1.1 million will pay for the construction, while the other approximately $300,000 paid for design and preparatory work.

The new automated meters will allow for an accurate reading of water usage and free up city workers from having to go door-to-door reading individuals meters, the mayor has said. The new meters can be read when a water distribution worker drives by it, he said.

The city received a 30 percent forgivable loan from the Ohio EPA to pay for a portion of the project.

The other 70 percent of the project will be paid back through the city’s three metered fees: water, sewer and storm water. The debt would be paid back over the next 30 years with 2 percent interest.