Wednesday, May 22, 2024
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Water/Sewer Moving Toward Advanced Metering

After deciding to move forward with advanced metering infrastructure for the Cookeville Energy Department, the city will implement the new automated meters for the Water Department as well.

Cookeville Water and Sewer Quality Control Director Barry Turner said 40 meters have been installed to test the system and it is going well. Cookeville City Council will vote Thursday on an ordinance that Turner said will automate another 1,000 meters. City Manager James Mills said the water department may already have more meters currently reading data than the energy department.

“We’re actually moving faster than we originally thought we would with our advanced metering,” Mills said. “We thought we’d be slower with water and sewer, but turns out, these meters are, you were already buying these types of meters.”

Turner said the manual meters the city used to buy have been discontinued, so many of the meters across the city already have automatic capabilities. He said he plans to buy more incrementally in the next fiscal year and hopes to have fully transitioned within the next five years.

“We’re excited about it and I think this, we’ve pretty much determined that we’re going to completely do this,” Mills said. “We’ll continue this as a trial, but with the knowledge that we’re going to implement this.”

Turner said the remotes that control the meters come at a substantial cost and the department has had to replace the lids on existing meter boxes during the transition.

“The last item on the bid tab, which is transceivers, that price is in the contract that was approved by council earlier,” Turner said. “We didn’t allocate the money to buy those. We’re buying a little over $100,000 worth of those.”

He said the city will buy conversion registers that put smart registers on existing meters. He said the money for this step of the project is already budgeted.

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