The city of Warrenton has resolved a discrepancy involving months of high water bills at the Crider Health Center.
The health center had accrued more than $20,000 in water bills from June to September. Crider facilities manager Jim Ferguson said he thought the high usage readings were caused by a faulty water meter installed when the building was constructed last spring.
Ferguson had gone before the board in October requesting an adjustment to the bill, which had estimated that the facility had used more than 4 million gallons of water in a four-month period.
The first bill Crider received after opening its doors in June was $5,700. Ferguson said he didn’t know about that bill because the contractors working on the building had paid it. And when the second bill for about $1,200 arrived the next month, he said he was still in the dark.
“Any bill under $5,000 our accounting department just pays it,” he told the board last month.
It wasn’t until a third bill came in at $15,000 that Ferguson suspected something was wrong with the meter reading. He had the faulty meter replaced, but not before another bill came in at $1,342.62.
Warrenton Public Works Director Guy Gevers said he made adjustments to Crider’s water bill based on readings Ferguson got for the month of October. The irrigation part of the bill, which is basically water usage outside the building for grounds and lawn maintenance, was adjusted based on a similar usage at Crider’s Wentzville facility.
The board of aldermen approved Tuesday night to make adjustments to the Crider Health Center’s water bills for July, August and September. The city didn’t adjust the June bill because it had already been paid by the building’s contractor, who didn’t voice any objections to the bill.
The newly adjusted bill for the three months came to $804.68, but Crider actually ended up with a credit of $416.22 because Crider’s accounting department had paid the July bill of $1,220.90.
In Other Business
The city of Warrenton will proceed with steps to annex a small strip of property near Interstate 70.
The proposed annexation comprises property along the south service road extending about 600 feet from the city’s west boundary.
City council members voted Tuesday night to set a public hearing Dec. 18 for the public to voice any concerns about the proposed annexation.
“There are no businesses or homes involved with this annexation so I really don’t foresee any objection to it,” Mayor Jerry Dyer said. “I really doubt there will be anyone (at the meeting).”
Dyer said the city doesn’t have any plans to develop the property proposed to be annexed, and that expanding the city’s boundaries is just something they do each year.
The proposal does, however, include a plan of intent in which the city will provide services to the area proposed to be annexed.
The city will also now have two black police cars in its fleet of blue, thanks to the tsunami that occurred last year in Japan after the earthquake.
“After the last (board of aldermen) meeting, I placed an order with Don Brown Chevrolet for two blue patrol cars,” Chief Greg Houdyshell said. “I was told the blue (paint) was no longer available because the mica for the paint had become scarce after the tsunami.”
The board approved 6-0 to move forward with the purchase of two black police cruisers.