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Village of Albion replacing 2,500 water meters for $300K

Photo by Tom Rivers: Marty Zwifka, a Village of Albion Department of Public Works employee, holds one of the new water meters. Zwifka is about halfway through replacing 2,500 meters in the village.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 5 December 2018 at 10:22 am

ALBION – The Village of Albion is replacing about 2,500 water meters that will give an accurate account of use by village water customers.

The new water meters replace ones that are about 20 years old. Many of those older meters lose their precision as the years go by, leading to water use measurements that aren’t accurate, village officials said.

Albion borrowed $300,000 to buy the new meters, with the money to be paid back by water customers through the water fund.

“We want to ensure to the people that we’re giving them the best product possible,” said Marty Zwifka of the Department of Public Works. “We want to ensure people are getting what they pay for.”

Zwifka has replaced just over half of the meters. It takes about 15 minutes for him to swap out the old ones with a new Zenner meter which has an automatic Internet reader.

The DPW gets a daily report from the meters and any big uses are highlighted. That can help alert the DPW and a village water customer if there is a leak.

The village had more than one water meter manufacturer before. The new meters are all standardized.

The village is saving about $140,000 by having Zwifka, an in-house employee, replace the meters, rather than contracting out the service.

Zwifka replaced a few meters in late 2017, and has been doing about 15 a day since March.

Village water customers who haven’t changed meters yet are encouraged to call the Village Office at (585) 589-9176 and schedule an appointment with the village clerk’s office.

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