Authorize a Joint Funding Agreement with U.S. Geological Survey in the amount of $1,123,805 for Streamflow and Water Quality Monitoring
The City of Portland ordains:
Section 1. The Council finds:
- Since 1972, Portland Water Bureau (PWB) has had ongoing agreements with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) for the collection of streamflow and water quality data in the Bull Run Watershed. The monitoring includes the measurement and recording of streamflow rates, reservoir levels, and selected water quality variables.
- The monitoring data are used to evaluate water quantity and quality in the Bull Run Watershed and compliance with Federal Energy Regulatory Commission requirements for the Bull Run dams.
- Monitoring data are also required for compliance with streamflow and temperature provisions of the Habitat Conservation Plan, which is the City’s approved method of complying with the Endangered Species Act and the Clean Water Act.
- The USGS is nationally recognized as the preeminent agency that monitors streamflow and water quality information, and its data are considered the best available for the City’s needs. Data from the USGS is accepted by regulatory agencies.
- PWB’s current agreement with USGS expires September 30, 2023. The new five-year Joint Funding Agreement (Agreement) will be effective October 1, 2023, through September 30, 2028.
- The cost for streamflow and water quality monitoring will be shared between the PWB, the USGS, and the Federal Priority Streamgage Fund.
- The total cost of the streamflow and water quality monitoring will not exceed $1,842,157. PWB’s contribution for the five-year term of the Agreement will be $1,123,805. The USGS will contribute $668,330 and the Federal Priority Streamgage Fund will contribute $50,022.
- PWB has requested funding of $168,571 in the FY 2023-24 budget. Additional funds will also be requested in FY 2024-25 through 2028-29 budgets.
NOW, THEREFORE, the Council directs:
- That the Portland Water Bureau Director is authorized to execute on behalf of the City a Joint Funding Agreement with the USGS, generally in accordance with the Agreement attached as Exhibit A.
- That the Mayor and Auditor are hereby authorized to draw and deliver checks chargeable to the Water Fund when demand is presented and approved by the proper authorities.
- That the Portland Water Bureau Director is authorized to execute amendments to the Joint Funding Agreement, including amendments increasing the total compensation up to 25% of the Agreement amount.
An ordinance when passed by the Council shall be signed by the Auditor. It shall be carefully filed and preserved in the custody of the Auditor (City Charter Chapter 2 Article 1 Section 2-122)
Passed by Council
Auditor of the City of Portland
Purpose of Proposed Legislation and Background Information
The purpose of this legislation is to authorize Portland Water Bureau to enter a new five-year joint funding agreement with the US Geological Survey (USGS) to continue streamflow and water quality monitoring.
A Bull Run hydrologic monitoring network has been operated and maintained under mutual agreement between the USGS and the Water Bureau for over 50 years. The monitoring system provides crucial hydrologic data for operating the Bull Run water system. These data help the Portland Water Bureau provide reliable water service to consumers and meet drinking water and environmental regulations. An additional monitoring site is being added to the network to provide data necessary to support regulatory changes anticipated with the release of a new total maximum daily load for the Sandy Basin from the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality.
Financial and Budgetary Impacts
The cost for these services will be shared between the Water Bureau, the USGS, and the Federal Priority Streamgage Fund.
The total cost of the agreement will not exceed $1,842,157. The Water Bureau’s contribution for the five-year term of the agreement will be $1,123,805. The USGS will contribute $668,330 and the Federal Priority Streamgage Fund will contribute $50,022.
Portland Water Bureau has requested funding of $168,571 in the FY 2023-24 Budget. Additional funds will also be requested in FY 2024-25 through 2028-29 Budgets.
No positions will be created or eliminated because of this legislation.
Community Impacts and Community Involvement
The Bull Run hydrologic monitoring network provides data that support supply operation optimization. Optimized operations reduce costs, maximize hydroelectric production, avoid unnecessary regulatory visits, and enhance supply reliability. All of these effects benefit the community as a whole and work to reduce costs of the drinking water system.
Public involvement was not included in the development of this agreement. The continuation of this agreement allows for the continuation of basic services provided by the USGS since 1972 and is noncontroversial in nature. The USGS is nationally recognized as the preeminent entity providing reliable, quality-assured stream monitoring services using protocols for which they are the standard bearer.
Data provided by the USGS are fundamental to operations and supply planning of the Bull Run Watershed. The City’s compliance with Federal Energy Regulatory Commission requirements, the Endangered Species Act, and the Clean Water Act rely in part on these data, which need to be of high quality.
100% Renewable Goal
Streamflow and reservoir level data from USGS monitoring stations are continuously used by Portland Hydroelectric Project plant operators at Bull Run Dam 1 and Dam 2 to optimize their operations and generate the maximum amount of hydropower possible while maintaining compliance with drinking water and environmental obligations.
Budget Office Financial Impact Analysis
This ordinance authorizes the $1.84 million project— of which the Water Bureau’s cumulative five-year contribution will total $1.12 million. For Year One, the bureau has budgeted costs totaling $168,571 into their FY 2023-24 Budget, backed by water sales revenue.
410 Consent Agenda in May 24, 2023 Council Agenda
Passed to second reading
435 Consent Agenda in May 31-June 1, 2023 Council Agenda
- Commissioner Dan Ryan Yea
- Commissioner Rene Gonzalez Yea
- Commissioner Mingus Mapps Yea
- Commissioner Carmen Rubio Yea
- Mayor Ted Wheeler Yea