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Meter switch planned

Alex Doty • Jul 21, 2015 at 12:17 PM

Grand Haven officials are now taking a serious look at radio-read water meters and monthly billing. The automated process has been a sought-after goal of City Council.

“We are continuing to step in that direction,” City Finance Director Jim Bonamy said. “There’s really no right or wrong — it’s what council wants to do.”

A project concept has been developed and system vendors have already been interviewed.

City officials say there are several benefits to automatic meter reads and monthly bills. These include:

— Monthly billings to 5,000 customers.

— Better customer service.

— Less accidental overuse and charges for water and sewer.

— Easier for customers to budget monthly payments.

— Less costly for the city to read meters.

“The customer with a running toilet won’t have to wait 3-4 months to find out about it,” Bonamy said. “There will be a lot less wasted water.”

A report by the city's finance department prepared for City Council indicates a 2013 project to install meters and radio meter reading equipment would cost about $3.1 million. Bonamy said the money could be borrowed.

“We have $19 million worth of bonding ability possible,” he said. “If we wanted to do something, we certainly can.”

To read more of this story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.

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