The New Year is upon us and a Happy New Year to All! Droughts don’t occur over a single season, nor does the remedy. The rain/snow amounts thus far are encouraging and hope remains that this will continue. Recent weather patterns have brought lower than normal cold in the day and during the nights.
A little reminder that Winterizing is more than an 11 letter word. When the day/night cold temps drop into the low 20s and teens, pipe rupture is soon to follow. Plastic ABS or PVC lets loose, copper splits along the seam and nothing good follows. Wrap pipes and bundle up exterior faucets, drain the interior piping system when you are away [LONGER THAN 24 HOURS], use a blend of ½ Antifreeze (we recommend an environmentally friendly brand), and ½ water to place in sinks and toilets.
The Antifreeze mixture won’t compromise the sewage system, as you don’t need to apply that much. About a ¼ cup will do nicely. Remember the interior of an unheated dwelling will, in the winter, get down into the low 30’s. Be nice to your pipes, give’em some love and drain out the water before leaving home. The water company has sent out the annual billing and has had some reaction to the 10% increase.
There are two large expenses slated in 2016: the cost of water purchase from CCWD and some much needed improvements to our Water Treatment Plant. The 10% increase is necessary to cover both expenses, which will total about $146,000 (a 1% rate increase is $14,000).
BLS Staff continues to meet with the US Department of Agriculture and has been discussing a low interest secured loan to cover the costs of completing the overhaul of the 35-40% of the remaining 1960s era piping. The original piping was small and was placed in rear yards. The project would relocate the replacement pipe out into the utility right-of-way. Along with the pipe size improvement, additional fire hydrants will be added.
Final details have been completed by the Long Range Planning Committee on a Meter Program that will use 60 volunteer customers, both full and part time. These meters will be read electronically and frequently in order to determine frequency of water usage.
As you already know going to a metered system will require an standard charge threshold, commonly know as a base Water or Meter Fee, plus a proportional charge for levels of water used. This program will run for a year, although we will have a sense of use in 6-8 months. Keep in mind that we already track system-wide use daily.
The purchase of the new meters has begun and weather permitting should be installed soon. If you make New Year’s Resolutions, please include continued conservation. We all did a superb effort in 2015 and we would like to see that success continue.
Continue to Save Water.
Even though it is already winter, please Winterize, when the opportunity presents.
Enjoy Leap Year.
Bob Maginnis President