Purchase of meters expected soon
Vance County could purchase water meters for the first phase of its water project as soon as next week.
At the Water District Board’s planning committee meeting Wednesday, board members narrowed down the county’s choice of meter supply consultants from four to one, pending a favorable review from at least four of the company’s 18 references.
Commissioners Dan Brummitt, Terry Garrison and Archie Taylor Jr. represent the Vance County commissioners on the Water District Board’s planning committee.
The planning committee is recommending the county purchase equipment from Carolina Meter & Supply and Badger brand meters, which support Itron meter reading technology.
The county will use a type of meter reading technology that requires a radio device attached to water meters, which can be detected from on off-site handheld device.
Envirolink, a Bailey-based company, already owns Itron equipment and software and is responsible for installing, operating and maintaining the county water meters.
“Itron will sit on just about any meter,” said Envirolink President Michael Myers. “It supports a wide range of meter manufacturers, but there are a couple it doesn’t support.”
The county’s first requested bids specified that the meter manufacturers supply meters compatible with Itron technology. Myers said this raised a concern that the county would limit the ability of certain meter manufacturers to bid on the proposal.
The second round of bids removed the specification and the meter supply consultant HD Supply Waterworks bid on the project with Neptune meters, which do not support Itron technology.
But the meter manufacturers compatible with Itron saved some costs the county would otherwise absorb because Envirolink owns Itron software and equipment.
Jordan McMillen, the deputy county manager and planning director, said the county would not pay any additional fees associated with setting up an interface between the meter reading software and the billing software.
“The added value of Itron is that it eliminates the county from having to pay for a maintenance fee on the equipment,” McMillen said Wednesday.
Out of the four meter supply consultants, Carolina Meter and Supply bid the lowest on all three item proposals requested by the county.
It bid $155,480.75 on the sale of Itron radio devices attached to meters. It bid $167,490.13 on the sale of Itron devices attached to meters with Itron meter reading equipment and software. It bid $158,633.35 on Carolina Meter and Supply’s radio device, equipment and software attached to meters.
Contact the writer at firstname.lastname@example.org.