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Portland Water Bureau

From forest to faucet, we deliver the best drinking water in the world.

GENERAL INFORMATION: 503-823-7404

1120 SW Fifth Ave, Suite 600, Portland, OR 97204

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UPDATE: Powell Butte Reservoir 1 to Undergo Routine Maintenance Cleaning

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FEBRUARY 27
On the afternoon of February 26, Portland Water Bureau operating engineers completed the draining of Powell Butte Reservoir 1 into Johnson Creek. Reservoir 1 is now completely emptied and will undergo a routine cleaning and inspection to ensure sanitary and structural integrity.

The draining process began on February 9 and lasted just under three weeks. Throughout the entire operation, the flowrate of water into Johnson Creek was monitored 24-hours a day by the Water Bureau’s Water Control Center. Water Bureau operating engineers routinely tested the water for temperature, pH, and chlorine residual, ensuring that acceptable discharge parameters and environmental regulatory requirements were met. No chlorine residual was detected at any time during the discharge.

The reservoir will now receive a thorough cleaning and inspection.


FEBRUARY 19
Portland Water Bureau operating engineers are in the process of slowly draining water currently in Powell Butte Reservoir 1 into Johnson Creek.

Since the draining process began on Monday, February 9, operating engineers have been routinely testing the water for temperature, pH, and chlorine residual. No chlorine residual has been detected. 

On Thursday, February 19, draining into the creek from the reservoir will begin occurring 24-hours a day, instead of just during normal work hours. This decision culminated from a reduction in stream flow and a low chance for precipitation.

The flowrate of water into Johnson Creek will continue to be monitored 24-hours a day by the Water Bureau’s Control Center. Routine testing of the water will carry on throughout the operation to ensure acceptable discharge parameters and environmental regulatory requirements are met.

In an estimated 15 days, Powell Butte Reservoir 1 will be completely emptied and will undergo a routine cleaning and inspection to ensure sanitary and structural integrity.


FEBRUARY 6
On Monday, February 9, the Portland Water Bureau will begin conducting a routine maintenance draining and cleaning of Reservoir 1 at Powell Butte Nature Park in Southeast Portland. 

Water Bureau operating engineers will slowly drain the approximately eight-million gallons of water currently in Reservoir 1 into Johnson Creek. The engineers will be on site during work week hours to supervise the operation.

The flowrate of water into Johnson Creek will be monitored 24-hours a day by the Water Bureau’s Control Center. Frequent testing of the water for turbidity, temperature, pH, and chlorine residual will occur throughout the operation, ensuring acceptable discharge parameters and environmental regulatory requirements are met.  

Once the draining is complete, the reservoir will undergo a thorough cleaning and inspection.

Reservoir 1’s draining is estimated to be complete by Wednesday, February 25.

Powell Butte Reservoir 1 was built in 1979-1980 and became operational in 1981.Powell Butte Reservoir 1, along with the newly operational Reservoir 2, are valuable assets to the water infrastructure. The two 50-million gallon underground tanks will help provide sufficient drinking water storage capacity to meet anticipated future growth in demand for water.

The Water Bureau follows strict guidelines and maintenance schedules to ensure the reservoirs are kept at optimal levels of operation. The underground reservoirs receive a thorough cleaning and inspection every five years to ensure structural and sanitary integrity.

For questions regarding reservoir maintenance, please contact Tim Hall, Public Information, at 503-823-6926 or by e-mail at: Tim.Hall@portlandoregon.gov.  

Visit the project webpage at: www.portlandoregon.gov/water/powellbutte.

Lindsay Wochnick
Public Information

Employees’ Unique Artwork Showcased; David Rosenak Wins Employee Art Exhibit People’s Choice Award

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All the Art that Fits display

In December, the Regional Arts & Culture Council (RACC) unveiled the 18th annual “All the Art that Fits” art exhibit. An annual favorite for the City of Portland and Multnomah County employee artists and visitors, the display showcases employee artwork in the lobby of the Portland Building.

During the exhibit, RACC invited visitors to vote for their favorite works. This year, artwork submitted by the Portland Water Bureau’s own David Rosenak won the RACC People’s Choice Award!

 David Rosenak wins the RACC People’s Choice Award
"Untitled" oil on plywood artwork wins David Rosenak the People's Choice Award (left), David drawing in his studio (right, photo courtesy of the Oregonian)

David, an employee in the Finance and Support Services Group, spent more than a-year-and-a-half working to complete the oil on plywood panel. A labor of love, his black and white piece depicting a cityscape is extremely detailed and dramatic. This piece, along with additional paintings by David, will be featured in the Portland Art Museum in spring 2015.

  
Artwork by Bob Goldie (left) and Carrie Popenuk (right)

Six additional extremely talented Water Bureau employees also contributed their creative works to display, ranging from photography to mixed media and marquetry, ink on paper, and canvas work.

 
Artwork by Sarah Fine (left) and Lori Snyder (right)

They include Dylan Abel, Bob Goldie, and Leigh Kojiro in the Engineering Services Group, Sarah Fine in the Resource Protection and Planning Group, and Carrie Popenuk and Lori Snyder in the Customer Services Group.

 
Artwork by Dylan Abel (left) and Leigh Kojiro (right)

Congratulations to David for receiving the People’s Choice Award and a big thanks to Dylan, Bob, Leigh, Sarah, Carrie, and Lori who submitted unique artwork and truly deserve to be recognized for their craft!

Lindsay Wochnick
Public Information

Water Bureau Submits FY 2015-16 Requested Budget; Focused on Keeping Rates Low and Maintaining City’s Critical & Aging Infrastructure

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On Monday, February 2, the Portland Water Bureau submitted the FY 2015-16 Requested Budget to the City Budget Office.

As the steward of the city’s 120-year old water system, the bureau works to develop and recommend to the Portland City Council and our customers a budget that allows it to continue to meet its mission of providing clean, safe, and affordable drinking water to our customers. 

A Budget Advisory Committee (BAC) -- comprised of representatives of key stakeholders that included members of the community and labor representatives worked alongside Water Bureau Administrator David Shaff and Group directors and managers to develop the annual budget per City of Portland guidelines. Representatives of the Portland Utility Review Board (PURB) and the Citizens‘ Utility Board (CUB) also participated in the process along with members of the public.

Together, the BAC members and bureau staff reviewed, discussed, deliberated, and worked to develop a consensus budget. Their challenge was to propose a budget that:

  • Balanced the infrastructure and service needs of the city’s aging and complex water system,
  • Complied with state and federal regulations relating to clean water, and was
  • Understanding of the economic issues facing both residential and business customers throughout the Portland metropolitan area.

To access the Water Bureau’s Requested Budget, including an overview from Commissioner Nick Fish, visit http://www.portlandoregon.gov/water/requestedbudget15-16.

For more information on the Water Bureau’s FY 2015-16 budget process, visit http://www.portlandoregon.gov/water/budget15-16.

Lindsay Wochnick
Public Information

Join Our Team: Water Resource Program Specialist

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If you're interested in joining an award-winning public utility where employees thrive on the pride of delivering a life-essential product with world class customer service, the Portland Water Bureau might be just the place for you.

The Water Bureau is a recognized leader in the utility industry. We've achieved this success by investing in the very best people and empowering them to find new and better ways to meet our customer's needs.

The Water Bureau currently employs approximately 560 people. All current job postings with the City of Portland are posted online, and updated weekly. We are an equal opportunity employer that values diversity and inclusion in the workplace.

Join our team!


Water Resource Program Specialist (Program Specialist)

Closing Date/Time: Monday, February 9, 2015 at 4:30 PM Pacific Time
Salary: $4,881.00 - $6,507.00 Monthly
Job Type: Full Time
Location: Portland Building, 1120 SW 5th Ave, Oregon

The City of Portland is recruiting for a Water Resources Program Specialist in the Portland Water Bureau’s Resource Protection and Planning Group. The Water Resource Program Specialist will assist multiple program managers within the Source Protection section, which is responsible for protecting drinking water quality in the Bull Run Watershed and the Columbia South Shore Well Field.

For additional information and to apply for the Water Resource Program Specialist position, START HERE.

Superbowl Weekend - Tackle the Toilet

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In case you haven’t heard, there is a big event this weekend – the superbowl.  Whether you tune in or not, there’s one bowl we should all keep our eyes on: the toilet bowl. 

The most common place to find a leak in a home or business is the toilet. While it might seem like a minor problem, toilets can waste lots of water over time, affecting the environment and your pocketbook.

Checking for toilet leaks is easy. Use these “Three Rs” to tackle your toilet and start saving water and money inside your home:

  1. REMEMBER to check your toilet for leaks twice a year. Tying the schedule to easy-to-remember annual events (like the Super Bowl in the winter and the 4th of July in the summer) is a great way to ensure it gets done. To check for leaks, add 10 drops of food coloring inside your toilet tank and wait 10 minutes. If the dye color shows up in your toilet bowl, you have a leak.
  2. REPAIR leaks that can be fixed by do-it-yourselfers using inexpensive replacement parts. Check out this short video on how to repair a leaky toilet from our partners at the Regional Water Providers Consortium.
  3. REPLACE older toilets with a WaterSense high-efficiency one. Older toilets can use up to four times more water per flush. The Portland Water Bureau currently offers a $50 rebate for replacing an old toilet or urinal with a high-efficiency model. Commercial, residential and multifamily properties are eligible. The old toilet or urinal MUST be recycled at an approved recycling center. For complete rebate details visit: www.portlandoregon.gov/water/rebate     

So go ahead, tackle that leaking toilet this weekend! 

Water Efficiency Team