Claremore Daily Progress

Government

July 25, 2013

GE meter service could save city $1M in lost revenue

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CLAREMORE —

Additional benefits include the systems automated controls for consumers.
Claremore Electric customers will have the ability to monitor usage via the Internet or on smart phone devices.
They will be able to prepay for utility services and budget according to daily usage if desired.
The city will get the benefit of debt reduction from these services and will save man-hours, as meters will be able to be remotely disconnected for nonpayment.
Another benefit is outage detection, according to Claremore Electric Director Larry Hughes.
Hughes reports that the current system is timely and costly when outages occur.
Employees must hunt for the location of an outage and often times service is complaint driven.
The GE system will provide detailed precise outage information allowing employees to pinpoint a problem and resolve the issue faster, according to Hughes.
GE has proposed the system based on a 10-year contract, including all maintenance on the approximately 19,000 meters that will be installed.
The city’s meter replacement budget is about $6,000 a year and meters can be anywhere from new to 30 years in age, according to Hughes.
The cost to install new meters without the GE service would be in the millions, he added.
The new meters will eliminate the use of outdated equipment, saving the city from a substantial loss in revenue, according to Hughes.
The system will be operation in six months, if the council votes to purchase the service.
City officials appeared enthusiastic during the meeting; however, several council members wanted more financial information before making a decision.
No vote was taken and it has not been released when the contract will be up for further review.

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