Leetonia changes billing method

LEETONIA–Water and sewer customers will see a new way they are charged on their March bills, but there will be no change to the rates.

Village council Wednesday night approved resolutions to bill customers by the gallon instead of 1,000 gallons due to measuring capabilities of the new meters installed in the fall. Both the water and sewer bills will reflect the per gallon charge.

“It’s a better way of billing,” explained Village Administrator Gary Phillips. “Customers pay for their exact usage each month” after the minimum charge.

According to Phillips, the village has been billing customers by 1,000 gallons because that is as low as the previous meters could record. He offered as an example a customer who would use 1,500 gallons each month would be billed for 1,000 the first two months and then 2,000 the third when the excess would be added, causing confusion for the customer.

With the new billing per gallon, the customer still pays the same amount of money, and the village still collects the same amount of money, at the end of the year, but it will be evenly dispersed by actual usage, Phillips said.

The village recently completed a comprehensive water meter replacement project, removing approximately 850 outdated meters and installing high tech ones that can be remotely read. The project cost $417,929, paid for with a low-interest loan through the Ohio Water Development Authority (OWDA).

In other business, council approved the purchase of a 2019 Chevy Silverado 1500 4×4 pickup truck police cruiser from Tim Lally Chevrolet in Bedford at a cost of $36,573 fully equipped with lights, sirens and other necessary equipment.

Council also granted permission for three firefighters to attend the Winona-Hanover Township Fire Symposium seminar April 6 at United High School at $40 each.

Additionally council closed Main Street between Chestnut and Walnut streets from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. May 18 for a community day that will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. There will also be a community yard sale from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. the same day in Wick Park to benefit the beautification committee.

A Coke Ovens Committee meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Feb. 19 at village hall.

The next regular council meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. Feb. 20 at village hall. There are no committee meetings scheduled prior.