The power company may have offered a 'whoops' but it looks like the water utility has plans.
What this utility is installing is the Sensus Flexnet
. This appears to be a 900 MHz dedicated spectrum, 8KBps, 7 level FSK, TCP/IP, Linux using, dedicated network. The collection Towers are intended to be 200' to 600' up a tower to cover 75 to 300 sq miles. Sampling can be by minute, hour, or day. It looks like the meter radios are good for 2 watts. Downlink capabilities are not clear from what I have found so far.
Listening to all the meters in 75 square miles and managing traffic for minute updates has got to be an interesting challenge.