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The City of Portland, Oregon

Environmental Services

working for clean rivers

Phone: 503-823-7740

Fax: 503-823-6995

1120 SW 5th Ave, Suite 613, Portland, OR 97204

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Proposed Rules Governing Private Capping of a Neighbor's Sewer Line

Portland’s Bureau of Development Services (BDS) and Bureau of Environmental Services (BES) have proposed new administrative rules to be jointly adopted and administered by BDS and BES. The proposed rules would govern notification requirements applicable to a property owner who wishes to cap a neighbor’s private sewer that crosses the first property owner’s property without a recorded legal easement. If a property owner has a recorded legal easement for their private sewer to cross their neighbor’s property and the easement meets the requirements specified in the proposed rules, the City will not issue the neighbor a plumbing permit to cap the other property owner’s sewer line. The proposed rules primarily memorialize, and thereby improve transparency of, existing policies and practices.

The proposed rules and a fact sheet about the rulemaking are available below. BDS and BES accepted public comment on this proposal from Feb. 3 to Mar. 4, 2020. The comment period is now closed.

For more information, contact Emily Sandy at or (503) 823-7828.