Winter weather forces Tallmadge to estimate water meter readings

by Holly Schoenstein | reporter Published:

Tallmadge -- As this winter's snow and cold persists, the city's Water and Sewer Department continues to estimate meter readings for some customers.

The meter readings will be estimated for the billing cycle of November 2013 to January 2014 for water customers located on and between East and Southeast avenues.

For the previous billing cycle, October to December 2013, the city estimated meter readings for customers on and between East and Northeast avenues.

Billing estimates are calculated based on customers' history of water consumption, and the bills will adjust once their actual meter readings resume. The process is similar to budget billing offered by utility companies.

Mayor Dave Kline said the water bills will even out after the city stops using estimated readings.

"It's not like you're paying more than you should. It will always be caught up," he said.

The workers read the meters by district and zone.

In the past, the city has estimated meter readings in lieu of actual readings as inclement weather can prevent workers from accessing the meters. Several inches of snow accumulation can cover meters, making them difficult to find and dig out, and subzero temperatures make it unsafe for workers to be outside for extended periods of time, Kline said.

Contact this reporter at 330-541-9428 or hschoenstein@recordpub.com

Facebook: Holly Schoenstein, Record Publishing Co.

Twitter: @SchoensteinH

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  • This is the problem with current meter technology that we have in the ground. ┬áCompanies like Capstone Metering work with Verizon Wireless for their meters to connect and report data using SMS text message. ┬áThe archaic days of workers digging up meters in the field are almost over, I just hope cities like tallmadge realize it before they waste any more of our tax dollars.