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The City of Portland, Oregon

Portland Water Bureau

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

Customer Service: 503-823-7770


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Mayor's Proposed Budget Supports Water Bureau Requests; Budget Adoption Scheduled for June 18

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As the steward of the city’s 120-year old water system, the Portland Water Bureau developed and recommended 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.

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

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 consensus FY 2015-16 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.

Mayor’s Proposed Budget
On May 5, Mayor Charlie Hales released the FY 2015-16 Mayor’s Proposed Budget. The proposed budget supports the following Portland Water Bureau requests

Rate Increase Position & Staff Realignment Position Supporting PUB
Increase rates by seven (7) percent. Position authority for an additional 1.0 Full-Time Equivalent (FTE) for a second full-time ranger position in the Bull Run Watershed, additional  0.50 FTE office support specialist II (OSSII) and the elimination of a full-time permanent OSSII position. Provide funding for a position in the City Budget Office that will directly support the Portland Utility Board (PUB) administratively and analytically, funding to be equally shared with the Bureau of Environmental Services.

Rate Ordinance
The first hearing before City Council for the FY 2015-16 Water Rate Ordinance was May 21 and the second reading was on May 27. City Council approved the Water Rate Ordinance authorizing water and water related rates and charges beginning July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016.

The approved retail rate increase is seven (7) percent and will increase the volume rate from $3.682 per hundred cubic feet (ccf) to $3.940 per ccf (or $0.258 per ccf). The base (billing) charge for quarterly billed residential customers will increase from $11.13 to $11.91 (or $0.78) per month. The typical residential customer using 5 ccf per month will pay $31.61, an increase of $2.07 per month, or seven (7) percent greater than the current bill.

Public Involvement
Each year, members of the public are invited to be engaged and provide feedback in the budget development process both for the city and for individual bureaus. For the FY 2015-16 budget, public participation opportunities included:

  • Citywide budget events were held in March, April, and May 2015. Events included a City Utility Rate Review meeting, Community Budget Forums, and a Budget Committee Public Hearing.
  • The second annual City Utility Rate Review meeting occurred on March 12. Members of the public were invited to provide feedback and pose questions regarding the FY 2015-16 proposed drinking water and sewer-storm water rates.
  • The Water Bureau also convened the BAC to guide the bureau's budget-making process. BAC meetings were open to the public and occurred in October, November, and December 2014 and in January 2015.

Next Steps
The City Council is scheduled to adopt the FY 2015-16 Budget on Thursday, June 18. For additional information on budget events, visit the City Budget Office’s webpage.

Annual Drinking Water Quality Report Released Online

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2015 Drinking Water Quality ReportThe Portland Water Bureau has posted its annual water quality report online. The federally-required report outlines how, from forest to faucet, Portland is continuing to deliver clean and safe drinking water for the city of Portland.

In the report, customers can learn why Portland has some of highest quality drinking water in the country, and general information about Portland’s drinking water system. The report, which summarizes water quality results for 2014, outlines that Portland’s drinking water met all public health standards.

“I hope everyone takes a moment to read the report online. This information is extremely important,” said Water Bureau Administrator David Shaff. “Delivering high quality drinking water to our customers is the Water Bureau’s top priority. This report details what goes into delivering water to your tap.”

The Portland Water Bureau is mailing a postcard this week to inform every customer about the availability of the report online. Customers are able to request a paper copy, either online or by phone. The report is available in large font for the visually impaired. Russian, Vietnamese, Chinese and Spanish and can be found online or by calling the Portland Water Bureau Water Line at 503-823-7525.

The report is available online at:

TRAFFIC ADVISORY 06/04/15: Traffic, bike and pedestrian traffic controls in place on 1900 block of North Interstate Avenue

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The sidewalk will be closed to pedestrians, and the bike and motor vehicle lanes will shift to the west on North Interstate Avenue between North Tillamook Street and the intersection of North Interstate and North Larabee avenues. These traffic controls will begin June 8, 2015 and will be in place for two-three weeks. Hours of operation are 7 am to 3 pm, Monday-Saturday.

A contractor for the Portland Water Bureau will be removing the brick face of the bureau’s building at 1900 North Interstate. To protect the public, a construction barrier will be moved close to the sidewalk curb and the bike and motor vehicle lanes will be shifted to the west to make room for both types of vehicles.

Motorists and bicyclists are urged to use alternate routes, remember to drive slowly, and exercise caution when traveling in the construction area.

Project information can be found online at

Summer 2015 Customer Newsletter

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Summer 2015 Customer Newsletter - page 1 of 2   Summer 2015 Customer Newsletter - page 2 of 2
Customer Newsletter

Each quarter, the Bureau of Environmental Services and the Portland Water Bureau offer important information on rebates, payment options, drinking water quality and water efficiency tips in printed inserts that accompany your sewer-stormwater-water bill. 

In the Summer 2015 statement, customers will find a newsletter highlighting water conservation, this summer’s water supply, accessing the 2015 Annual Drinking Water Report, how to sign up for a monthly statement, and more!

The Customer Newsletter can also be accessed online.

Customer Services

Powell Butte Reservoir Piping Flow Meter Testing Scheduled for June 9

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On the morning of Tuesday, June 9, the Powell Butte Reservoir 2 contractor will conduct a test of two ultrasonic flow meters located in piping associated with the underground Reservoirs at Powell Butte Nature Park in Southeast Portland. 

The four hour test will consist of Water Bureau operating engineers slowly draining approximately 72,000 gallons of de-chlorinated water at 300-gallons per minute from a 54-inch discharge pipe through the meters and then into Johnson Creek.

The test will confirm the meters are accurately measuring water flowing through the pipe and are able to monitor future discharges.

Water Bureau representatives will be on site at Powell Butte throughout the entire duration of the test to supervise and monitor the operation.

The flowrate, temperature, and PH of all water discharged to Johnson Creek will be closely monitored to ensure compliance with all applicable environmental and regulatory requirements. 

For questions about the operation, please contact Lindsay Wochnick, Public Information, at 503-823-3028 or by e-mail

Lindsay Wochnick
Public Information