Town to try radio water meters

Published 10:34 pm Monday, September 19, 2011

A grant from State Rep. Kurt Wallace helped the town of Thorsby buy a much-needed water meter reader, along with 10 radio meters.

Wallace presented Mayor Dearl Hilyer and the council with a $4,083 check Monday. The money bought 10 meters plus the reader, which replaced an 11-year-old one that was malfunctioning.

The water meters were available at the same cost of regular meters, but are special in that they can be read from a distance, even from passing cars, within a one-block radius.

The meters will replace traditional meters in places that are hard to reach (behind fences) or places that have dangerous dogs or roadside conditions, said Public Works Director Terry Jackson.

Jackson said hopefully someday, though far down the road, the town will have completely new meters. He said the radio meters would decrease the amount of time it takes to read all town meters from three days to just one day.

In other business, the council voted to place a 3-cent tax on smokeless tobacco. The town currently puts a 3-percent tax on smoked tobacco like cigarettes but none on smokeless tobacco.