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Ballston mulls wireless water meters

"As meters get older, they tend to slow down," said Blair.

A more accurate reading could cause residents to close the tap and, since Ballston buys water before selling it to residents, save the town money.

The age of the meters in Ballston varies, but many were installed as early as 1971.

According to Blair, applications for that type of federal stimulus money are due by May 28.

A number of municipalities around the state have bought wireless meters from Blair Supply, including the villages of Lake George, Hudson Falls and Voorheesville and the Town of New Scotland. Stillwater also made the switch to a similar system recently.

The Town Board did not take action following Blair's presentation, but did forward his information to the water council for further discussion.

The Town Board and Jenkins Park Advisory Board members also engaged in a brief but lively debate at Tuesday's meeting when the advisory board presented an update that suggested a raise for the park's caretakers.

Minutes from a Feb. 11 meeting of the JPAB show that four members present unanimously approved granting a $5-per-hour raise to Norm and Eileen Collins to bring their pay to $20-per-hour. Since baseball teams are mowing more fields at Jenkins, this year could mean less mowing for the caretakers, meaning the town would not necessarily spend more money while rewarding decades of hard work from Norm Collins.

Councilman Jim Briaddy objected to the idea of the caretakers making "more than highway employees."

The town's 2009 payroll shows that Motor Equipment Operator John Hollowood has the highest hourly wage and makes $23.62 per hour, though some of his colleagues make under $20.

JPAB vice president Sat Ihara noted that Collins does not receive benefits or a retirement plan from the town and also supplies and maintains his own equipment.

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