Mr. Woodman You Are Correct Again.


6-inch-meter-installation1Mr Woodman,

I finally got out to look at the large meter installation west of the Circle K (see attached photo). You are 100% correct. Neptune recommends a minimum of 4 X pipe diameter of straight pipe upstream of the meter if a strainer is installed (one is installed in this case). As you can see there is no straight pipe between the strainer and the upstream elbow. Neptune also recommends 4 X pipe diameter of straight pipe downstream of the meter but I suspect that the downstream backflow preventer might suffice here?

You are also correct about the level of expertise needed to evaluate these types of meter installations. On a good day I can glue a piece of household PVC pipe or sweat a copper fitting and have them not leak (on a GOOD day) but I ain’t no plumbing expert. The real problem will crop up when it comes time to do something about these installations. Manager Kisela said at the last City Council meeting that because meters were not installed according to manufacturer’s directions “doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll be inaccurate.” What kind of crap is that?! I ain’t no expert on city management either, but that kind of thinking is simply not acceptable.

Mike Gardner
618 Ruth St
Port Orange, FL 32127

5 thoughts on “Mr. Woodman You Are Correct Again.

  • June 26, 2014 at 10:36 am

    The reason why the city manager said that Mike is because if he is unable to hide the truth about this debacle from the council he knows his goose is cooked. The bottom line is he is directly responsible for this debacle and you can bet he micromanaged this large meter replacement initiative seeing that his recently shit canned FCCMA MIT utility director does no the difference between a compound meter and a hoola hoop. The assistant utility director who has endorsed these improper installations all along has been warned by senior technical staff in public utilities that these meters were not being properly installed. Kisela disenfranchised technical staff and facilitated Yarborough and his assistant director’s ramped up replacement program. In the words of Jason Yarborough,”My people have been hittin it and gittin it with this large meter replacement program”. I guess Mr. Kisela will now be hittin it and gittin it trying to white wash this screw up and loss of millions in potential revenue. Stay tuned for the need for hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars to go back and correct dozens of these improperly installed meters. Kisela’s only other alternative is to cover this one up to save his own ass and leave these misinstalled meters as they are. That way the taxpayers will continue to lose millions of dollars in revenue each year but at least Kisela will keep his job. I guess Kisela and Allen Green will not be able to blame this one on Tom Cinefro or deflect responsibilty onto some other poor unfortunate scapegoat son of a bitch.

  • June 26, 2014 at 11:40 am

    Simply put, embarrassing!

    • June 26, 2014 at 1:37 pm

      I wish I could get paid what the engineering consultants get.
      It’s too bad that citizen employees are not allowed to participate in city government or speak openly when they see wrong things being done. As I was told many times when you work for the city you give up your rights as a Port Orange citizen.There are several current utilities employees that could be of assistance with the problems in utilities but they are held back. They can’t shut me up or threaten to fire me anymore.
      As I have mentioned before, in my opinion, you have some guys that are a major part of the reason the water plant is winning awards and the best in Fla. there right now that could start fixing this crap and turn the whole department into an award winner over time. There is no instant fix for these problems that have been going on for years. Instead of promoting from within, someone would rather hire MIT’s. They don’t fit the MIT mold, they are strictly top professionals in utilities. I’m correct about these guys too! Look at it this way, you don’t hire a guy that managed a 7-11 or a gas station just because they have management experience for police chief or fire chief you hire a cop or firefighter. Get my point?

  • June 27, 2014 at 3:21 am

    Port Orange officials resign in wake of water meter spending
    By Lacey McLaughlin
    Published: Monday, June 23, 2014 at 5:31 p.m.
    Last Modified: Thursday, June 26, 2014 at 12:23 p.m.
    PORT ORANGE — The city’s public utilities director and purchasing manager have resigned after the discovery of an error that led to $411,510 in unauthorized water meter purchases.
    City Manager Greg Kisela confirmed Monday that Public Utilities Director Jason Yarborough and the city’s purchasing manager Tom Cinefro resigned last week after an independent review revealed how the error occurred. A public utilities employee has also been suspended.
    Last September, Port Orange approved a contract with Sunstate Meter and Supply for $500,000 to replace water meters in the city. But staff mistakenly purchased 16 additional meters and supplies, overspending the approved contract amount by $411,510.
    Yarborough, who was hired in September, is the city’s second public utilities director to resign in less than two years. The city’s former utilities director, Roger Smith, resigned in March 2013 after allegations he granted thousands of hours of unauthorized administrative leave to himself and other employees.
    “I think the biggest challenge we have is that we need to make sure that processes we have in place are being used correctly,” Kisela said. “We need to make sure safeguards in place are working correctly. Certain people knew certain things and didn’t communicate them through the chain of commands.”
    Kisela said the meter purchases were not the only factors that led to Yarborough’s resignation. He was hired last fall as the city prepared a major overhaul to replace all the city’s water meters. More than 8,000 water meters have been replaced citywide since last July and another 4,500 are on track to be replaced by September.
    Vice Mayor Don Burnette said that while he’s glad employees are being held accountable for mistakes, the resignations are unfortunate.
    “It was his choice to resign and he probably wasn’t the best fit for the city,” Burnette said about Yarborough. “Not every marriage is meant to be. He’s had his challenges and I wish him well.”
    An independent report released last week by consultant Dick Kelton found that staff were aware of issues with the meter contract as early as March, but a change order revealing the error was not presented for council members’ approval until May 27.
    Yarborough reported that he first learned the contract had reached its limit through a staff e-mail on April 3 but was not aware that it was a result of an error at that time, Kisela said.
    When a staff member initially prepared the change order for the city’s council agenda in early April, the order did not reflect that the contract was overspent, the report states. The report also found that software designed to track and control expenses was not being utilized by city employees.
    Councilman Bob Ford said he was disappointed with Kisela for not bringing the error to the council’s attention sooner. Kisela said he reviewed the change order on April 11 and upon further inquiry discovered that an error had occurred. He said he wanted to get all the facts before approaching the council.
    “People make mistakes, but I think this whole thing is not about what people did but their attempts to avoid the consequences,” Ford said. “I don’t feel good about anyone losing their job. Things occurred here that opened questions about people’s abilities and willingness to be transparent.”
    Kisela will serve as the city’s interim public utilities director while the city searches for a replacement. He said a new public utilities director will likely be hired by the fall and the city should hire a new purchasing manager in the next 90 days.
    Editor’s note: This story has been changed to correct the identity of consultant Dick Kelton and reflect that it was a public utilities employee who had been suspended.


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