Moulton Niguel Water District is getting a boost in its efforts to detect leaks and upgrade its infrastructure.

This month, the U.S. Department of Interior Bureau of Reclamation awarded Moulton Niguel $300,000 in federal matching funds for its “Advanced Metering Infrastructure” program. Moulton Niguel was one of just 54 projects in the entire country to receive funding from the federal government’s water and energy efficiency grant program. In fact, this is the District’s second grant received through the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, amounting to more than half a million dollars in federal funding for its advanced metering infrastructure program.

“We’re grateful to the U.S. Department of Interior Bureau of Reclamation for investing in the future of Orange County’s water infrastructure,” said Moulton Niguel Director Larry Lizotte, who will retire this year after nearly a half-century on the Moulton Niguel Board of Directors. “Our advanced metering infrastructure program helps our agency detect leaks at the earliest possible moment – saving our customers water and money.”

Under the project, Moulton Niguel will install radio transmitters and automated meters at nearly 4,900 residential, commercial, and fire protection sites in its service area. The automated meters will help the District detect water leaks, improve operations, and allow customers to monitor their water usage.

“The projects we’ve selected today will help communities throughout the Western United States by providing them with tools they can use to better manage their water needs,” Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman said in a press release announcing the $26.5 million in water efficiency grants.

The advanced metering infrastructure upgrade is expected to conserve 505 acre-feet of water every year, which is nearly 165 million gallons of water annually. In addition to conserving water, automatic meters will save Moulton Niguel customers money by eliminating the need and expense of in-person meter reading.

Moulton Niguel Board President Donald R. Froelich thanked Rep. Mimi Walters for her help to secure the $300,000 federal matching grant.

“Congresswoman Mimi Walters supported our application every step of the way and has been a fierce advocate for our customers. We’re grateful for her leadership and her staff’s assistance,” Froelich said.

Moulton Niguel Water District provides high-quality drinking water, recycled water and wastewater treatment services to customers in Aliso Viejo, Laguna Niguel, Laguna Hills, Mission Viejo, San Juan Capistrano and Dana Point. A leader in environmental protection, Moulton Niguel maintains the lowest average bill in South Orange County.