St. Clairsville talks meter upgrades

ST. CLAIRSVILLE City council took a step toward a large-scale water and electric meter upgrade project during Monday’s council session when members held a voice vote to designate Cooper Power System as a vender to provide software, equipment, pricing and services for the new system.

An ordinance will be drawn up and contract presented.

Service Director Dennis Bigler reported that the current type of meter being used by the city is no longer available and old beyond their recommended life. The new system would include remote communication technology that the current meters cannot support.

Bigler noted the need for an upgrade to remote communications has been under discussion for 10 years. He said an upgrade would replace old and inaccurate meters as well as prove a savings on man hours.

He added that more efficient readings would be completed the same day of every month.

Bigler also pointed out the system will have several additional features, such as the ability to forewarn of outages. In addition, there are applications for law enforcement, since the equipment would provide real-time video of key intersections and locations in town.

Mayor Robert Vincenzo added that Cooper Power System was the best of five companies. Their proposal’s advantages included inconspicuous equipment and did not require the installation of towers.

The company is expected to make a presentation during an upcoming work session.

In matters of recreation, Vincenzo added that layout of a new sand volleyball court near the amphitheater is proceeding and work should commence soon.

Also, the summer concert series will begin June 11, 18, and 25, July 2,9,16,23, and 30, and Aug. 6, 13, and 17. All concerts are 7-9 p.m.

“It’s a free concert, and second to none around this area,” said Vincenzo.

Progress is being made to address the issue of excessive parking on some areas of the city streets and lots and yards. The process of crafting legislation to limit the number of vehicles on a street or yard is ongoing.

Council Member Frank Sabatino brought up issues of uncut grass in the second ward, at 130 Norris St., 116 Neffs St., and 104 Jefferson. Law Director Al Davies said the situation is complicated by the fact that some of the owners are unavailable.

The city would have to determine if the property is in foreclosure, or if it is necessary to locate the owner. There is a process to maintaining the grounds and place liens against the property. There have been prior efforts to contact the owners and the city initiated mowing on one property last year. He added that private citizens may also pursue litigation.

The next fire district meeting will be held June 19 at 3 p.m., beginning with a work session with the insurance carrier.

The Allen Pool at Memorial Park is open.

D eFrank can be reached at