Town-Wide Water Meter Replacement Program

Town-Wide Water Meter Replacement Program 

What Homeowners Can Expect:
  • The installation will be completed in zones across Lincoln over the next 6-8 months
    • Map - this map outlines the zones for installation & will be updated throughout the process. The date at the top of the map indicates the version.
  • Homeowners will be contacted through direct communication from Neptune, the Town’s installer, and the Town starting in July,
  • Neptune and the Town will send homeowners a letter and pamphlet that includes instructions on how to book an appointment for installation with a reference #.
  • Diameter Services, our consultants on this project, may call homeowners requesting access to the water meter as part of the project's quality assurance. This is optional for homeowners. Diameter Services staff will wear a Town of Lincoln independent contractor badge as identification. 

Background:

  • In 2017, it was identified that almost 88% (5,600) water meters were at their end of life and needed replacement
  • It was determined, through an assessment design phase that all of the Town’s 6,343 meters be replaced, for continuity purposes, and that a new (Advanced Metering Infrastructure) AMI technology be used for meter reading purposes
  • In April 2019 Council approved Neptune Technology Group to supply and install equipment at a cost of $2,280,160.58, and the firm Diameter Services be supply contract administration and site inspection
  • It is anticipated that the return on investment is just over 5 years

AMI System:

  • Supports the Town’s efforts to continually improve our water system
  • The technology is reliable and proven to:
    • Be more accurate in reads
    • Provide better customer service
    • Support water conservation efforts
  • Is an automated system that eliminates manual reading improving efficiency
  • Has proactive leak detection alerts
  • Detects backflow events
     

   

image of a water meter
                                 
Image of a water meter

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q. What are the benefits of AMI?

Upgrading to the AMI system will:

  • Allows meters to be read remotely
  • Improves customer service by providing timely data should reading/billing issues arise
  • Allows for multiple meter reads daily, instead of once every month
  • Helps to identify abnormal water use
  • Portal available to monitor water usage in between billing periods for customers
  • From a residential perspective, homeowners now have the ability to monitor their water usage and detect leaks, including supporting videos and documents to identify sources of water leaks in the home
  • Able to set alarm notifications for high consumption
  • The town will now have a valuable source for data to assist efforts in determining water loss and implementing future leak detection programs

Q. Is the program mandatory?

  • Yes, it is.
  • It is important that all meters are the same functionality & technology
  • Those who don’t comply with the physical meter replacement will be advised that their water service will be turned off until a new meter is installed
  • For those who don’t comply with the installation of the reading technology on the side of the house, there will be $105 fee per quarter, in addition to your regular water bill.

Q. Will they be coming in my house?

  • Yes, meter replacement for most properties will require the Town to coordinate access to your existing water meter.
  • Residents will be contacted for an appointment time that is convenient for the contractor to come on to their property
  • Residents can book an appointment by phone or online, once the program is launched in August 2019  – please do not book until you have received the tri-fold notification from Neptune.
  • Appointments will be available Monday to Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Q. Why is there a Manual Quarterly Meter Read for non-AMI equipped meter charge for residents being considered?

  • Once the new meters are installed the Town will no longer have a contract in place for physical meter reads and all reads and uploads of information but will completed through the AMI software
  • As traditional meter reading contracts are discontinued following the installation of AMI, the burden of completing the reads falls on the municipality staff
  • If a resident has not given permission for the contractor to replace the meter by the end of the program, then staff will be required to read the meter manually. As such, the proposed charge is for cost recovery for operations staff physically going to the individual properties, obtaining the reads and the water billing clerk to manually enter within the accounting software

Q. Why did the Town choose Neptune?

  • The Town of Lincoln went through a competitive procurement process to select a vendor for this project. The process involved stringent requirements
  • In April 2019, Council approved the award of the project to Neptune Technology Group
  • The meter recommended by Neptune is the meter that is currently being installed by Town Water Operators
  • Neptune has worked with over 4,000 water utilities in North America and over 600 in Canada, including Port Colborne, Welland, Grimsby, Hamilton, Toronto and Region of Peel. In the last 5 years, Neptune has installed over 1 Million AMI enabled meters and over 650,000 of those meters were installed on an AMI network like the system that is proposed to be installed in Lincoln.

Q. If I’m a tenant, what am I responsible for?

  • Ensuring that you provide access to the property on the date and time provided to you by your landlord.
  • If you receive a direct notification, please provide the information for your landlord.

 

FAQs specific to Neptune and the installation process are available on Neptune’s website.
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