Boardman meets for safe water

By on Friday, June 17th, 2022 in Columbia Basin News Featured Stories

BOARDMAN — Community members in rural Boardman will meet with Morrow County Commissioner Jim Doherty at 6 p.m. today (Friday) in the West Glen neighborhood where most of the 60 wells tested were found to be above the maximum contamination levels for nitrates, dozens up to 5 times the level.

“Thanks to Oregon Rural Action and rural Boardman residents for organizing this meeting.  It will be an honor to meet with families, hear their concerns and deliver the first emergency water to the community,” Doherty said.  “Working with federal and state agencies, assistance will be ongoing until we can ensure safe drinking water for all county residents.”

According to Oregon Rural Action, in preparation for Friday’s meeting, community members continued to express both shock and concern over the results of testing that found high levels of nitrates. While many said they do not drink the water, almost all thought the water was safe if boiled and regularly used the water in cooking. Others thought their water was safe because of the filtration system they had purchased. 

While going door to door to invite people to the meeting with the Commissioner, an older gentleman said with tears in his eyes, “I hope I live to see the day that this problem is fixed! There is hope!” 

Oregon Rural Action (ORA) is a culturally diverse community-led grassroots organization in Eastern Oregon working to promote social justice, agricultural and economic sustainability, and the stewardship of the region’s land, air, and water. Through community organizing, public conversations, and policy advocacy, ORA is building a rural movement for the well-being of all people and our environment.