The village is moving ahead on its decision to install new wireless water meters at residences in Enon.
Village officials originally applied for a 20-year loan for roughly $300,000 to pay for the meters and to cover any additional costs such as installation and administrative fees. But because the village reduced the term of the loan from 20 years to 10 years, officials were able to reduce the amount of the loan to about $220,000.
The decision to reduce the length and amount of the loan was made because of a number of factors, including the village receiving a lower bid than had been expected for the purchase of the meters, as well as an analysis of the village water fund that revealed it could handle a yearly payment of around $25,000 on the loan. The payment as of now is figured to be roughly $22,000.
According to Christopher Lohr, the village administrator, the village plans to use and read the old meters through early August. But if the funds are authorized in time, workers will install some of the new meters shortly after. Village workers will do the installation of the meters themselves.
The installation of the new meters will not result in personnel reductions, but there will be operational changes. Instead of relying on three full-time and one part-time employee going out and reading each meter manually, the village will send out one employee, equipped with a wireless meter reader, to drive each street of the village and collect water usage data. This new process will take around 4 hours compared to the old way, which would take a full 40-hour work week for each of the three full-time employees. This wireless reading task will rotate between each employee that used to manually take the meter readings.
Since the wireless meter reading only requires one employee, the other employees that would normally assist with taking manual readings from the meters will be able to focus on other parts of the villages operations, including street cleaning, cutting the grass at the parks, and other direct customer service tasks.
“We are very excited about this,” Lohr said. “It adds efficiency to our community and to our staff.”