The Department of Utilities is comprised of two divisions, the Water Division and the Water Pollution Control Division. Our office is located at 70 Halsey Street and we can be reached at (401) 845-5600 or by email. Both the Water Division and Water Pollution Control Division operate as enterprise funds of the City.
The Department of Utilities, although a City Department of the City of Newport, is regulated by state and federal agencies in addition to City policies and procedures. The management and operation of each Division is supported by the revenue received from its respective billings.
Certain City Departments provide services that are integral to the operation of the Department of Utilities; examples include the Finance Department and City Solicitor's Office. The City's costs associated for providing these services are allocated to both the Water Fund and Water Pollution Control Fund.
The Water Division operates and manages the source water reservoirs, treatment plants, storage tanks and distribution system. The City's water distribution system also services the Town of Middletown and a small portion of the Town of Portsmouth. We also sell water wholesale to the Portsmouth Water and Fire District and Naval Station Newport.
The Water Division is responsible for providing drinking water that meets standards established by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH). The Water Division is licensed by the RIDOH as a Public Water Supplier, License # 1592010. The Water Division is also required to report to the Rhode Island Water Resources Board.
The revenue and rate structure for the Water Division is regulated by the Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission. The Water Division staff is committed to providing our customers the safest and most reliable drinking water possible.
The Water Pollution Control Division is responsible for providing wastewater treatment for the residents of Newport. In addition we provide wastewater treatment on a wholesale basis to the Town of Middletown and Naval Station Newport. The Water Pollution Control Division also manages the storm drainage system within the City.
The waste water treatment facilities are operated and maintained in accordance with a service contract with Newport Water Services. The City and Newport Water Services are issued a Rhode Island Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Permit # RI0100293 to operate the wastewater facilities.
The sanitary sewer collection system and storm drainage system are operated and maintained by staff from the Water Pollution Control Division.
The sewer use charge is established by the City Council. Services for wastewater treatment for the Town of Middletown and Naval Station Newport are invoiced in accordance with contractual agreements. The Water Pollution Control Division is responsible for operating the wastewater and storm drainage systems in accordance with regulations established by the US EPA and the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management.
The Director of Utilities, Julia A. Forgue, PE, is responsible for the overall administrative management of the Department. Assisting the Director of Utilities is the Deputy Director of Engineering, Robert Schultz, Jr., PE. and the Deputy Director of Finance, William Yost, Jr.