Norwich Public Utilities Board of Commissioners & Sewer Authority By-Laws


Norwich Public Utilities Mission:

Norwich Public Utilities exists to make Norwich a better place to live, work and do business.

 Norwich Public Utilities Vision:      

We work together to deliver utility services in a way that reflects  our passion for exceptional reliability and strong customer and community relationships.  We know how vital our services are to each person, family, neighborhood, business, and community group we serve.

Norwich Public Utilities Values:

People – We work together with mutual respect and kindness.  We are committed to build our skills, and combine them with the skills of others for top performance.

Reliability – We can be counted on everyday.  We continually improve our services and infrastructure to find our customers the best deal possible.

Customer Focus – We all build strong one-on-one customer relationships.  We give each customer what they want while protecting the needs of all customers and the community.

Norwich – We play a vital part in improving the quality of life in Norwich by contributing the city payment, people, resources, and leadership.  We leave assets and the environment better than we found them for future generations.  


  1. Satisfied customers
  2. Significant contribution to the city
  3. Exceptional reliability & emergency response
  4. Low rates
  5. Knowledgeable well-treated staff
  6. Clean environment 


Purpose of the Norwich Public Utilities Board of Commissioners and Sewer Authority:

The Norwich Public Utilities Board of Commissioners and Sewer Authority (hereafter referred to as “Board”) represents the interests of the people of the City of Norwich in assuring NPU achieves results and its assets are protected and enhanced.

 How the Board will operate:

The Board operating policies and practices are consistent with the Charter of the City of Norwich.

  1. Five commissioners are appointed by the Norwich City Council for staggered terms of five years.
  2. The Board elects a chairperson, vice-chairperson and secretary annually in March.
  3. The Board chairperson leads board meetings and with the other commissioners ensures applicable policies and practices are followed.
  4. The Board meets on the fourth Tuesday of each month and as specially scheduled. Agendas for the meetings are distributed by the NPU General Manager by the Friday prior to each meeting.
  5. Board meetings adhere to Robert’s Rules of Order.
  6. All board meetings are open to the public other than executive sessions.
  7. The Board chooses two representatives and alternates from the Board sit on the Connecticut Municipal Electrical Energy Cooperative (CMEEC) Board of Directors.
  8. The Board chooses a spokesperson to address all Board matters with the public and the media.
  9. The Finance and Audit Committee is a standing committee of the Board responsible for ensuring proper annual audits and budgeting.
  10. Board meetings are conducted in an efficient manner and focus on long term policy and strategy.
  11. New Board members are given an orientation to the board by other commissioners, receive a copy of the Norwich Public Utilities Board of Commissioners and Sewer Authority By-Laws and are given a tour of NPU facilities by the General Manager.
  12. The Board conducts annual retreats for board development and/or strategic planning.
  13. Each Board member is paid $10.00 for each regularly scheduled Board meeting.
  14. Board members are reimbursed expenses for conferences and travel.

Board Accountabilities:

  • The Board selects the NPU General Manager, reviews his performance annually and provides for his compensation and professional development.
  • The Board provides fiscal oversight by reviewing, challenging and approving the following NPU policies, plans and documents:
    • Mission, vision, values
    • Strategic plans, policies and goals
    • Budgets and annual business plans
    • Union contracts
    • Job descriptions
    • Large vendor/consultant contracts
    • New products and services
    • Large expenditures that don’t fit under the city’s procurement policy
    • Rates and fees
    • Non-payment and disconnect policies
    • Enterprise liability insurance limits and risk
    • Energy risk management and procurement policies
  • The board routinely monitors NPU performance and accepts accountability for that performance. The board requires the following items be reported to them:
    • Monthly financial statements
    • Biannual budget reports
    • Damage claims over $5,000.00
    • Delinquent commercial accounts
    • Progress on major projects, plans, and initiatives
    • Other performance measures as agreed to with the General Manager
  • The board regularly communicates information to the owners of the utilities on its value and performance.
  • The board strives for continual improvement. The board conducts a self-assessment and reviews its by-laws annually.

Member Conduct:

  1. Commissioners prepare for meetings by reading agendas and handouts prior to meetings. They participate at each meeting with pertinent questions, comments and actions to achieve the board’s purpose as stated above.
  2. Commissioners regularly attend monthly and specially scheduled board meetings. The Board will comply with City attendance requirements.
  3. Commissioners demonstrate loyalty to NPU and the Board. They do not share confidential information outside the Board.
  4. Commissioners understand the relationship between the NPU General Manager and his staff. They support the General Manager and his staff with daily operations.
  5. Commissioners’ actions enhance NPU’s public image and the Board’s public image.
  6. Commissioners are knowledgeable about the City of Norwich conflict of interest policy. The Board complies with City of Norwich requirements of Conflict of Interest.

 Delegations to the General Manager

The Board delegates the following responsibilities to the NPU General Manager:

  1. Manages operations of NPU and all staff.
  2. Drafts all NPU policies and plans for Board review and approval.
  3. Drafts a summary of all union contracts for Board review and approval.
  4. Supports the Board in developing governance policies and in determining how organizational results will be achieved.
  5. Acts as spokesperson for NPU.
  6. Keeps the Board informed on the outcome of policy implementation, including achievement of goals and use of resources.
  7. Implements the business and strategic plans approved by the Board and reports regularly on progress.
  8. Provides performance monitoring data that permits the board to determine if the organization is operating efficiently.
  9. Shall inform who will act in the General Manager’s place during absences.
  10. Drafts communication strategy for owners of the utility on its value and performance.
  11. Will advise the Board if the Board is not in compliance with its own policies.