US WEST has combined its public contribution programs into a single foundation to improve efficiency and meet the needs of the company's 14-state service area, a spokesman said.

The new US WEST Foundation is expected to contribute more than $23 million to non-profit organizations in 1989.Utah and other states served by US WEST's telephone utility US WEST Communications, formerly Mountain Bell, will have a contributions coordinator to work with the new foundation in evaluating local grant requests, said W. Mack Lawrence, Utah vice president and chief executive officer.

He said grants will be made only to non-profit organizations providing services to communities served by US WEST companies.

The foundation, based in Englewood, Colo., will be administered by a 16-member board of directors and will be directed by Jane Prancan, executive assistant to the chairman and director of community affairs for US WEST.