of The Clarion
The Town of Kindersley has inspected water meters at commercial properties in town and council has received a report on the bypass inspection project.
Mayor Rod Perkins spoke about the project at a council meeting on Aug. 20 and he said council had received the final administrative report on the water meter bypass project. He said a total of more than 50 inspections were conducted in February at commercial properties.
The report states that the town’s administration conducted an inspection at a business in October 2016 after officials discovered there was no water consumption on the user’s bill. It was discovered that there was a bypass line around the water meter and the valve was in the open position to allow water to bypass the meter.
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A town employee closed the valve and directed the property owner to remove the bypass line immediately. The town started to review water rates in late 2017 and the possibility of more property owners bypassing meters was discussed.
Council directed the town’s administration to conduct more bypass inspections at commercial properties in the community and during the process, council approved Bylaw 05-18. The bylaw amended Bylaw 16-09 to increase penalties for bypassing meters and to make sure the bylaw could be enforced in municipal bylaw court.
The bypass inspections in February were conducted at locations with a higher need for water consumption, the report explains. Perkins said at the meeting that the inspection turned up several bypass-line infractions.
“We found 10 bypass valves that were in place,” the mayor said. He said that all of the 10 businesses have since removed the bypass lines to avoid penalties. “We found only one of them that was in the on position and operating.”
Perkins said three of the properties had single-use lock seals in place, but the bypass valves were not open. The seven properties without lock seals were issued a Notice of Violation and the three properties with lock seals were issued a Notice of Non-Compliance, so they were issued a warning.
The mayor noted that the town received backlash from several of the property owners, and six of them asked the town for more time to remedy the situation. The property with a valve in the open position was issued a fine and summons to bylaw court, he said.