Water shutoffs eyed in Johnstown

JOHNSTOWN – The city Water Board president said last week that city residents not responding to an ongoing citywide project to change their water meter reading equipment may have their water shut off for non-compliance.

Board President Nicholas Cannizzo Sr. said Friday there remain about 255 city water customers who haven’t complied with the ongoing new water meter work being done by contractor Anjo Construction LTD of Latham. He couldn’t say how many total properties the project has done thus far, but said Anjo looks to complete the project.

“That’s all we’ve got to do,” he said of the 255 figure.

The company is working on behalf of the Water Department to install remote-read water meter equipment at city residences and businesses as part of an ongoing project to modernize water services in Johnstown. Anjo is replacing all existing water meter registers with new remote read registers that can be read from the street.

“There are 87 [customers] in the south end that haven’t responded to us,” Cannizzo said.

He said the Water Department may have to shut off their water for their non-compliance to the project. In addition, he said the project has 168 customers in the north end of the city that have yet to have their new meter equipment installed.

“We’re either going to send a letter out if they don’t respond, or we’ll have to shut the water off,” Cannizzo said.

Cannizzo, an O’Neil Avenue resident, said he doesn’t understand reluctance by water customer to have their meters modernized. From a time standpoint, he said the switching out of his own equipment was a “10-minute job.”

Otherwise, Cannizzo said the entire project has “worked out good” for all the city’s water customers so far.

The Common Council in October approved a $597,930 contract with Anjo. According to Anjo’s website, an adult must be home during the replacement. To schedule an appointment to get their meter replaced, city water customers are asked to call 620-2272.

Gloversville did a similar automated meter-reading project, which replaced its 30-year-old system, for about $1.2 million in 2011 and 2012.

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at manich@leaderherald.com.