News and Information

Boardmember David Pratt has passed away

It is with great sorrow and sadness we must notify you that long time boardmember David Pratt passed away on 5/21/21.

David has been a Tooley Water District boardmember since the 1990's and was our longest standing boardmember.

David and his wife Kay grew up in The Dalles and were married in 1976. David's job took them to Nebraska where he worked for the railroad. In the 1990's they moved back to The Dalles region and David signed up to be a Tooley Water District Boardmember. In those days Tooley Water District didn't outsource to a system operator, rather the board maintained the system themselves. This made for a lot of work for the board. David took on the role of secretary/treasurer. As such he was responsible for maintaining the books, meeting agendas/minutes, and state filings.

Kay says two things were really important to David:
1) His faith in God. It was important to David that all people make peace with God before they leave this earth.
2) Tooley Water District. David really enjoyed and valued his ability to give back to his community through his work with Tooley Water District.

David Pratt will be sorely missed. Our community and water system are much better because of David's efforts.

Good News - Upper well running again

The upper well is operational again.

Big thanks to Hiland Water, AA Pump Service, and Hire Electric. These contractors collectively kept Tooley Water from ever completely running out of water (we were close a few times).

The upper well has a new pump, motor and nearly 300' of new piping. As AA pump service started into this project they found issue after issue, but in the end they were able to resolve. Hiland Water oversaw the operations while Hire Electric responded very quickly to our desperate call as our lower well's pumps failed. Hire Electric was able to get that well back up and running just before the reservoir ran out of water.

There is still a chance we have Nitrates in our system. Also, Chlorine levels may be a bit high during this transitional time.

We are currently running both wells but plan to turn off the lower well tonight after we have let the new pump run for a bit. We plan to submit a new Nitrate sample Monday and hope to have a result around Wednesday. Until we have an official test back of low Nitrates we should operate under the expectation that Nitrates are still in the water.

We will update this website when we have firm test results of safe water again.

Lower Well Pump Out

We have yet another issue!

The lower well's pump is now failing. Tooley Water District currently has no ability to pump water.


We hope to have the upper well working about 5:00 pm.

The lower well's pump is working again.

The reservoir is full again.

Feel free to irrigate again.

High Nitrate Warning

Tooley Water District has turned on the lower well (The well with high nitrate levels).

This is a temporary fix as we repair the upper well's pump. We hope to have this issue resolved in a couple of days.

See information about the risks of nitrates in our water here:

It should be noted that while Tooley has had the lower well turned off this year to date (until we just turned it on) we have been taking nitrate samples in an effort to better understand the risks.

The following table reflects the sample results from the lower well over the year.

Tooley Lower Well

Nitrate Logs

























Tooley Water District Pump Failure

Emergency Notice. 12:25 PM

Tooley Water District's only operating pump has just failed. We do not currently have the ability to pump new water.

It is imperative to turn off any irrigation systems and reduce water usage as much as possible in an effort to extend the water in our reservoir.

Also, members may want to turn off their hot water heaters temporarily until we get this issue resolved.

We are considering turning on our lower well (which has high nitrate levels) as an interim solution. We will update this website before doing so.


We plan to turn on the lower well later this afternoon.

This website will be updated when we turn on the lower well. Please stay tuned.

10/30/20 Nitrate Update

Good News!!!

We have been running solely on the upper well since the evening of 10/20/20. We just received test results from a test submitted Wednesday (10/28/20) taken from the reservoir (where we store our water after pumping it).

Tooley's Reservoir Nitrate Readings are now 2.61, well below the MCL of 10.

Please refer back to this website regularly as we will update it as soon as new information becomes available.

10/22/20 update on high Nitrate Levels

Tooley Water District received a test back today from the lab that places our system nitrates at 9.36 at the reservoir which is below the MCL of 10. We have been running on the upper well exclusively since we turned off the pumps on the lower well on 10/20. We expect nitrate levels to continue to go down as the old water gets used up and new water is replaced exclusively from the upper well.

As our system nitrate levels are now below 10 we are removing the health notice.

We recommend you check this website regularly. We will update it as new information becomes available.

High levels of Nitrate - more information

Please read this notification first:

Background and other information on the subject.

Every year Tooley Water District performs annual tests for nitrate levels. Our past tests are available in our CCR's which are available under the "reports" section of our website, or directly via this link:

This year, our nitrate levels jumped up to 18.6 for our lower well. The testing lab notified Oregon Health Authority who in turn notified Tooley Water District that we had an issue. Upon being notified by the Oregon Health Authority we worked with our contract water maintenance provider (Hiland Water) and determined the best option available was to turn off the pumps at our lower well. The upper well tested at below 4 milligrams per liter, well below the MCL of 10 milligrams per liter.

Currently we are operating on our single well.

Moving forward we are still evaluating our options. We are unsure how long we can operate on a single well. There are concerns that winter freezing temperatures could create new issues under our current configuration.

We are seeking pricing for a nitrate removal system.

Additionally, we are attempting to understand the reason for the increased levels.
According to the CDC

Nitrate can occur naturally in surface and groundwater at a level that does not generally cause health problems. High levels of nitrate in well water often result from improper well construction, well location, overuse of chemical fertilizers, or improper disposal of human and animal waste. Sources of nitrate that can enter your well include fertilizers, septic systems, animal feedlots, industrial waste, and food processing waste. Wells may be more vulnerable to such contamination after flooding, particularly if the wells are shallow, have been dug or bored, or have been submerged by floodwater for long periods of time.

As there are farming activities as well as potential septic systems near the lower well we are wondering if these could be related.

Additional information with regards to Nitrates in water systems is available from the Oregon DEQ: