St. John to replace 15,000 water meters over next year

Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 2, 2006


Staff Reporter

LAPLACE – In a move that St. John administrators say will pay for itself, the parish is gearing up to replace 15,000 water meters over the next year.

The council approved the funding for the project in July through a bond issuance of $5.65 million. The old meters will be replaced by new computerized ones that will improve the speed and accuracy of the meters.

The issue came about after years of complaints by residents to their council members about inaccurate water bills. Industrial users also found their meter readings were often inaccurate.

Chief Administrative Officer Natalie Robottom explained the problem in short.

&#8220We’re losing a lot of water due to inaccurate readings,” Robottom said. &#8220The savings from the water loss alone will be able to pay for the project itself.”

The repayment schedule on the bonds will be based on actual savings per year through the use of the new meters. The bonds will be repaid over the next 12 years, Robottom said.

Starting October 30, residents will begin to see workers in either safety green or blue shirts marked with the logo Siemens/PVI Meter Team. Each meter will take approximately 30 minutes to change, and areas will be serviced according to billing routes.

Water meters will only be replaced for customers with current accounts. All delinquent accounts will be shut off. Anyone with questions or concerns about the status of their account should contact the St. John Utilities Billing Department at 985-652-9569.