Engineer Bianca Hillhouse updated the St. Francisville Board of Aldermen Tuesday on the progress of several ongoing projects, saying that roughly 200 new gas meters have been installed in Hardwood and Audubon Hills subdivisions.

Hillhouse, who is with Professional Engineering Consultants, the town’s contracted engineering firm, said there is enough money remaining in the budget for another 60 meters. Mayor Billy D’Aquilla suggested the Pecan Grove area of town has old meters and would be a good area for the next phase of replacements.

Hillhouse also said at least 10 of the town’s fire hydrants are slated to be replaced, thanks to two Louisiana Government Assistance Program grants totaling $70,000.

“We are real lucky to get this money,” D’Aquilla said.

Additional grant money is available to help enlarge a water pipeline from four inches to six inches in the Villa Rose subdivision.

Hillhouse later discussed the replacement of the Burnett Road bridge, saying surveying and geo-technical work is under way with a report slated to be forwarded to the Corp of Engineers.

“The next step is to get working on the design,” Hillhouse said.

The board later approved payment of $86,537 for the renewal of the town’ premiums for property/inland marine, equipment breakdown and casualty insurance. Cooper Hurst, representing Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. of Baton Rouge, said that amount was an increase of only $707 from the 2014 rates.

“We do shop it around, but these are the best rates, and they are basically the same terms as the last three or four years,” Hurst said.

Town Clerk Shannon Sturgeon told the board that the town is exploring the option of online automatic bank drafts for payment of utilities and other expenses.

Eventually, she said, there will be a button on the town’s website where customers can click and pay with automatic drafts. “I hope by the summer it’s up and running,” Sturgeon said.