As you know, the GSCDD can do no wrong in our eyes.
So it should come as no surprise when we report that a 7-figure project being undertaken by the district is on time, on budget and the pilot phase of said project was completed with near perfect results.
In all seriousness, our website calls out the GSCDD when they deserve it – but now the shoe is on the other foot and we need to give credit where credit is due.
Beginning in November 2014 the Gateway Services Community Development District began a pilot program in which they replaced 474 out-dated water meters with new so-called “smart meters”.
The Water Meter Replacement Project is being overseen by GSCDD Utility Director Ivan Velez. The smart meters are basically new digital water meters that can transmit water usage information wirelessly which gives homeowners and the district a lot more insight in to how water is being consumed.
The test meters were installed over a three week period and have undergone two billing cycles, and the operators (GSCDD staff) and equipment have passed with flying colors.
This next piece of information is meant as praise, not a criticism: there was a cost over-run of $894.44 during the pilot program due to unforseen excavating required to install 4 out of the 474 meters. In our opinion the ‘oops’ factor could have cost 5 times that much and we would still call for a round of applause for the GSCDD. The fact they did a pilot program of this size and spent less than one thousand dollars in unexpected costs is outstanding.
That small excavating problem, along with a few perfectly normal software issues have all been resolved and the GSCDD staff will be requesting that the Board of Supervisors authorize an additional $1,186,996.04 to replace the remaining 5,950 out-dated residential and commercial water meters.
That amount has already been set aside in the GSCDD budget for fiscal 2015.
Potable (drinking water) meters and irrigation meters alike will be replaced throughout Gateway.
The main contractor working with the GSCDD to perform the meter replacements is North Carolina-based Fortiline Waterworks.
Fortiline has 34 offices in 12 states, including offices in Fort Myers and Miami in Florida. So if there’s ever a need for technical support their technicians are not far away.
Velez is expected to report the pilot program’s success at the next GSCDD board meeting. It is also believed he will request that the Supervisors formally grant permission to replace all of the remaining meters in Gateway.
Based on how well the pilot went, there seems little doubt the Supervisors will want to proceed.
Our hats (both our Gateway Sun hat and our Resident’s hat) go off to the GSCDD staff.