National Weights & Measures Week
David Thomas
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National Weights & Measures Week

Auditor’s Office Kicks Off National Weights & Measures Week

Jefferson- When you buy a pound of butter, County Auditor David Thomas thinks you should only pay for a pound of butter. That is the philosophy behind his office’s weights and measures program and the celebration of National Weights & Measures Week March 1st through March 7th.  This week highlights the role and importance of certainty in measurement as tested and administered by Auditors’ Offices across Ohio.

“I don’t think many taxpayers realize just what goes into making sure they are looked after when they are buying items at the store,” shared Auditor David Thomas. “Imagine a world without certainty in what you were buying, it would be devastating.”

Auditor Thomas joined veteran Certified Weights and Measures Inspector Jim Varckette at the Jefferson Sanders Market to kickoff the Weights & Measures focus for the office as they tested the checkout scales, deli scales, store packaged items, and did price verification.

“Jim is a tremendous employee, he’s devoted his career to serving our taxpayers and representing our office to the public,” explained Auditor Thomas.

While at Sanders, the pair tested the checkout scales to ensure accuracy of their calibrations for grocery items. This involved using up to 30 pounds of weight which can only be off with a tolerance of .06 ounces for those 30 pounds.

This was followed by the price verification role of the Auditor’s Office as Varckette and Thomas were joined by a Sanders employee and randomly selected 50 items to match the price advertised with the price charged at the register. Only two items out of 100 can be incorrect for the store to pass the test, which Sanders was able to achieve with no errors.

“We’re fortunate to have many good stores and people in Ashtabula County like Sanders here in Jefferson,” said Auditor Thomas. “Folks like them do the right thing, but we check everyone, every year to ensure compliance.”

Finally, the pair reviewed the deli section of the store selecting store packaged items to ensure the charged weight did not include packaging but only the food items inside.

“Think about it. If an item is off by 5 ounces and that 5 ounces is being incorrectly charged to the customer, a $0.50 overage may not mean much as an example, but it adds up quickly over many customers,” shared Auditor Thomas.

Thomas and Varckette spoke with residents while testing scales to remind shoppers of the importance inspecting has to price certainty. 

The Auditor’s Office handles 1,359 gas pumps yearly, 389 unique scales, 28 price verification stores, 21 vehicle tank meters, and many other unique commercial measurements. This week alone according to Thomas, Varckette is out in the field doing concrete hopper testing, grocery store checks, and will be at some of the county’s manufacturing facilities as well.

“This is a great example of just the variety of responsibilities Jim has and the many ways he helps protect our county’s consumers,” explained Auditor Thomas.

Every Auditor’s Office in Ohio is responsible for administrating their Weights and Measures program as agents of the Ohio Department of Agriculture. Thomas encourages taxpayers to contact his office with questions or if they see something that doesn’t seem right.

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