ENB-4.32 - BES Sub-Meter Program Administrative Rules

Administrative Rules Adopted by Bureaus Pursuant to Rule Making Authority (ARB)
Policy number


Administrative Rules Adopted by Bureau of Environmental Services Pursuant to Rule-Making Authority


What follows is the Table of Contents and an excerpt from the administrative rules: 

1.  Applicability

2.  Purpose

3.  Definitions

4.  Regulatory Authority

5.  Meters Required

6.  Program Requirements

7.  Program Fees, Charges and Credits

8.  Violations

9.  Administrative Review / Appeals

APPENDIX A – Background Information

These are administrative rules of the Bureau of Environmental Services (BES) Sub-Meter Program.

1.  Applicability

These rules apply to commercial ratepayers who:

A.  Want to demonstrate a quantity of sewage or drainage discharge below what would be assumed from their City-supplied water usage or other site conditions (such as quantity of impervious area);

B.  Use alternative water sources that discharge to City systems; or

C.  Use other site or facility processes that reduce sewage or drainage flows.

Ratepayers may be registered in the program upon their request or at the direction of the BES Director.

2.  Purpose

These rules regulate the City’s Sub-Meter Program and establish the BES decision-making criteria for measuring flows into and discharges from eligible commercial ratepayers to calculate accurately sewer and stormwater management service charges. These rules reinforce the City goals of charging commercial ratepayers for their actual use of City sewer, storm sewer, and drainage systems.

3.  Definitions

Terms used in these rules are defined in Portland City Code (PCC) Chapter 17.36. and the following:

A.  “Blowdown” means water discharged from heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems to the sewer to avoid the concentration of impurities during continued use.

B. “Facial Challenge” means a challenge to a requirement that is based on an argument that the requirement cannot be applied fairly or reasonably in any situation. By contrast, an as-applied challenge is one based on an argument that a requirement should not be applied to the challenger’s particular situation because of factors that, in the challenger’s view, distinguish it from similar situations.

C.  “Totalizing Meter” means a volumetric flow meter designed to measure and register total flow.

D.  “Virtual Meter” means a meter simulator used as a measurement and calculation alternative for determining flow volume. The term includes virtual charge meters and virtual product meters.

1.  “Virtual Charge Meter” means a virtual meter used to estimate site discharge volumes.

2.  “Virtual Product Meter” means a virtual meter used to measure the volume of water consumed in manufacturing products or onsite systems.

4.  Regulatory Authority

These rules are authorized by Portland City Code (PCC) Section 3.13.040. These rules implement PCC Section 17.36.050 B.


Adopted by Director of Bureau of Environmental Services January 8, 2015.

Filed for inclusion in PPD January 8, 2015.

Amended by Director of Bureau of Environmental Services March 12, 2019.

Amended by Director of Bureau of Environmental Services July 17, 2019.