City Clerk Michele Jones told the council that when city employees went to read some of the meters, they trailed behind the people installing the said meters. This action recorded a "0" water reading, resulting in a minimal bill to Kingston customers. According to Jones, the city's employees did not turn in the reading on the old meter to be calculated into the system and billed separately, as has been done with previous customers. Since then, Jones has received the paper work and will need to enter the consumption rate into the electronic water billing system to produce an accurate bill. Any customer with questions concerning their bill should have their account number available if they call city hall when inquiring about their bill.
Other business discussed by the council and voted upon included offering assistance to the elderly and disabled citizens who cannot move their trash cans to and from the roadside curb. The council unanimously voted to approve an offer of help to those residents in need and the city will begin a search to discover which residents are elderly or disabled and cannot maneuver the bins. To report a handicap and request assistance, residents may call Jones to be added to a list.
The council also discussed the creation of an ordinance that would hold residents responsible for any repair or replacement to the new water meters. While an ordinance currently exists against tampering with meters in an effort to gain free water, the new rule would cover vandalism and accidental damage. City Attorney Peter Olson is expected to prepare and present such an ordinance to the council at their next meeting scheduled for April 2 at 7 p.m. at city hall.
Before concluding the night's meeting, Mayor Ron Casey told the council that the carpet in the meeting room would be removed today and tiles are anticipated to replace the old covering. Casey sent out requests for three bids and received one response from a Kingston resident. He also said that the room would need to be re-painted before a proclamation would be signed regarding the Great Locomotive Chase on April 11 and future events.
Budget discussions will continue at the council's next work session and a vote may come the following week. Any comments may be submitted for consideration before the vote.