The Water Department is responsible for providing an abundant, high quality supply of potable water to the citizens and businesses of Portland. The Water Department maintains the water distribution mains and provides funds for development, extension and improvement of the facilities required to carry out its duties.
The Water Department employs a full-time water technician and utilizes personnel from the Department of Public Works for maintenance of the water distribution system as well as for construction and service connections that are done by staff. Some construction or reconstruction projects and distribution systems are of a size or nature, which necessitates contracting these services to outside individuals or firms. The Water Department provides funds for this work.
The water treatment and distribution systems are regulated by the Michigan Department of Public Health. Revenues for all water system improvements and operating costs are generated by water sales and through special fees such as connection fees, system development charges and special assessments.
The City of Portland is beginning a water meter replacement program in homes and businesses throughout the City. Most water meters in the program are 20 years old or older and have reached the end of their projected life cycle.
The meter and reading device replacement will be performed by SLC Meter. Installers will carry identification and will be driving marked vehicles. City of Portland DPW personnel will manage and work with SLC and residents to ensure the work is done properly and efficiently. The installers will need to enter the home to replace the meter and upgrade the reading device. The work should take between ½ to 1 hour per home to complete. A new cellular transmitter (CT) will be connected to the meter and installed above it in the basement or crawl space. The old outside visual reader will be removed or left in place at your request.
*Please schedule an appointment by visiting www.slcmeter.com and clicking on the appointment link for the City of Portland or call 800-335-1448.
Hours are Tuesday through Friday from 8 A.M. to 5 P.M. and Saturday from 8 A.M. to 3 P.M.
If you should have any questions or concerns, please call the DPW at 517-647-2948 Monday through Friday 8 A.M. to 3:30 P.M.
NOTICE: CITY OF PORTLAND - WELL Number 5 PFAS CONFIRMATION TESTING RESULTS
On September 25, 2018, a Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) contractor collected a sample of water from our three production wells and one standby well. Those results reported no per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) were detected in our primary wells PW-4, PW-6 and PW-7. Those results also reported no detectable PFAS other than trace levels of PFOS at 4 parts per trillion (ppt) in our standby well, PW-5. This level is 17 times below the MDEQ standard of 70 ppt. In response, we directed our engineer, Fleis and VandenBrink (F&V) to collect a confirmation sample from PW-5. The well was sampled on November 30 and the results reported no detectable PFAS other than trace levels of PFOS at 3.26 ppt.
Since this level of PFAS is below the MDEQ standard, City action is not required by the State of Michigan. However, the City will continue to work with our Engineer, Fleis and VandenBrink (F&V) to take the following actions:
- PW-5 will remain off-line indefinitely. PW-5 was taken out of regular service over 20 years ago and since then was only used in emergency and standby situations.
- Develop and implement testing of waste water for PFAS from potential sources that discharge to our waste water treatment plant.
- Conduct annual testing for PFAS.
- Conduct a study to identify suitable locations for a new community water well.
If you need additional information, please feel free to contact me directly at 517-647-2931 or at the email address below.
S. Tutt Gorman
Portland City Manager
NOTICE: CITY OF PORTLAND - PFAS TESTING RESULTS The Michigan PFAS Action Response Team (MPART) is in the process of a statewide initiative to test drinking water from community water supplies. The test is looking for a group of manmade chemicals called per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). PFAS are a group of industrial chemicals that have been used world-wide in common consumer products and manufacturing processes. PFAS can be found in fire-fighting foams, stain repellants, nonstick cookware, waterproof clothing, food wrappers, and many other household products.
Two PFAS chemicals are perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS). PFOA and PFOS have potential health implications when present in drinking water at concentrations above health advisory levels. The EPA has set a lifetime health advisory (LTHA) level for PFOA and PFOS in drinking water. The LTHA level is 70 parts per trillion (ppt) for PFOA and PFOS combined. Other PFAS compounds do not have LTHA levels. The State of Michigan is using 70 ppt for decision making purposes. We obtain our regular drinking water supply from three groundwater wells: PW-4, PW-6 and PW-7. The City also maintains an emergency well: PW-5. PW-5 was taken out of regular service over 20 years ago and is only used in emergency and standby situations. On September 25, 2018, a Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) contractor collected a sample of water from our three production wells and one standby well. Today, we received the results that reported no PFAS was detected in our primary wells PW-4, PW-6 and PW-7. PFAS at 4 parts per trillion (ppt) was detected in our emergency well, PW-5. This level is over 17 times below the MDEQ standard of 70 ppt. In response to this result, the City has been working closely with MDEQ, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHSS), and our Engineer, Fleis and VandenBrink (F&V). Despite the low level (4ppt) and not being in regular service, I directed that PW-5 be taken completely off-line pending results of re-testing to confirm the MDEQ results. General information on PFAS in drinking water from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and other resources can be found below. If you need additional information, please feel free to contact me directly at 517-647-2931 or at the email address below.
S. Tutt Gorman
Portland City Manager
- DEQ Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) regarding PFAS
- PFAS health related questions should be directed to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) at 800-648-6942.
- State of Michigan PFAS Action Response Team (MPART) website serving as the main resource for public information on PFAS contamination in Michigan
- Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ASTDR) website including health information, exposure, and links to additional resources
- United States Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) website including basic information, U.S. EPA actions, and links to informational resources
The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) will soon be asking Community Water Supplies to perform Residential Cross Connection Inspections. The first phase of these inspections, will begin with homes that have lawn sprinkling systems and/or boiler heat as those systems pose a higher potential risk of causing a possible cross connection.
The City of Portland Water Department would like to encourage you to contact us, if you have either or both in your home. In doing so, you would be helping us to update our records so we can continue to provide you with high quality and safe drinking water for years to come.
- Phone: 517-647-2948
- Email Water Department
The HydroCorp website provides information regarding cross connections. The information provided explains what a cross connection is, what you can do to protect yourself, your neighbor, and your community from a possible cross connection event.
If you have any questions or would like to learn more about what you can do within your home to protect our water supply please contact the Water Department. We would be glad to help.
Throughout the State of Michigan, areas of polluted groundwater are present in almost every urbanized area. When contamination in groundwater becomes significant, human health and economic activities may be affected.
As a result, communities have recognized the need for a systematic approach to groundwater quality management.
A Wellhead Protection Program (WHPP) is one approach that develops long-term strategies to protect a community’s drinking water supply. The long-term management of groundwater quality is endorsed at both the federal and the state level.
Specifically, the Federal Safe Drinking Water Act was amended in 1986 to include wellhead protection. Additionally, the State of Michigan provides financial and technical resources wellhead protection program communities.
The City of Portland’s Wellhead Protection Plan (Plan) is a “living” document that details action being taken to ensure the long-term integrity of the City’s water supply system.
- City of Portland Wellhead Protection Program Plan (PDF)
- Wellhead Protection Program Plan Flyer (PDF)
The Water Department conducts semiannual preventative maintenance on the water system by systematically flushing all fire hydrants.
Hydrant flushing typically occurs the first part of April and mid September.
Rusty and/or discolored water can occur in your home after hydrant flushing.
If you water is discolored, please run your cold water until it is clear.
Make sure to check your tap water before washing clothes - let the water run clear before using.
Please call Rod at 517-647-2948 with questions or to determine when crews will be in your area.