2024 N.W. Beech Street
Madras, Oregon 97741
(541) 475-3625 (24 hrs)
(541) 475-3652
(541) 475-3905 (fax)

Job Vacancy




Date:  September 17, 2018



Re:  Vacancy – District Watermaster/Construction Superintendent


The North Unit Irrigation District (District) located in Central Oregon is currently recruiting for the position of District Watermaster/Construction Superintendent (DW/CS). The District serves irrigation water to approximately 58,900 acres in Jefferson County, Oregon around the Cities of Madras, Metolius and Culver. The District is responsible for the operations and maintenance of the irrigation distribution system, which consists of approximately 65 miles of main canal, 235 miles of laterals, a pumping plant and two reservoirs, Wickiup and Haystack Reservoir. The District has an annual operating budget just over $4.0 million and employs 27 employees. The District is part of the Deschutes Project, a federal reclamation project, and is under contract with the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (USBR).


Reporting to the Operations Manager the DW/CS will, plan, direct, manage and oversee the activities and operations of the District’s water operations, including water delivery systems, water operations and associated construction projects for the delivery of irrigation water; coordinate assigned activities with other District departments and outside agencies; and to provide highly responsible and complex administrative support to the Operations Manager. The DW/CS will also assist with implementing Board policies and programs as well as budget development and review.


Individuals interested in applying for this position can submit a cover letter, resume and completed District employment application no later than Friday, September 28, 2018 to the district office at 2024 NW Beech St, Madras, Oregon, 97741, by fax (541) 475-3905 or email to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .  Additional information can be obtained by visiting http://www.northunitid.com/jobs





Under administrative direction, plan, direct, manage and oversee the activities and operations of the District’s water operations, including water delivery systems and water operations and associated construction projects for irrigation water; coordinate assigned activities with other District departments and outside agencies; and to provide highly responsible and complex administrative support to the Operations Manager. Assist with implementing Board policies and programs; assists with budget development and review.

Examples of Duties

The duties listed below are illustrative only and are not meant to be a complete and exhaustive listing of the duties and responsibilities of the classification.

  • Administer water deliveries in response to orders by District water users.
  • Monitor conditions and performance of the District water conveyance system. Arrange and implement necessary maintenance actions.
  • Supervise Ditchriders in responding to water orders, regulating water in the conveyance system to meet the water supply needs of District water users, and to protect District water rights.
  • Monitor conditions and performance of the District water conveyance system.
  • Support the Operations Manager in his/her absence, and on other specific assignments made by the Operations Manager.
  • Report to the Operations Manager on water delivery and conveyance system operations and maintenance activities.
  • Assume full management responsibility for all water operations services and activities including water delivery facilities and water operations; recommend and administer policies and procedures.
  • Manage the development and implementation of water operations goals, objectives, policies, and priorities for each assigned service area.
  • Monitor and evaluate the efficiency and effectiveness of service delivery methods and procedures; allocate resources accordingly.
  • Plan, direct and coordinate, through subordinates, the water operations work plan; assign projects and programmatic areas of responsibility; review and evaluate work methods and procedures; meet with staff to identify and resolve problems.
  • Select, train, motivate and evaluate water operations personnel; provide or coordinate staff training; work with employees to correct deficiencies; implement discipline and termination procedures.
  • Direct and oversee safety compliance efforts.  Formulate and suggest work safety standards, and enforces procedures. Meets compliance and reporting requirements of federal or state regulations; and directs activities of the safety committee and may provide safety training.
  • Supervise water storage, deliveries and regulation to meet water supply needs of District water users.
  • Supervise maintenance operations of the District required for efficient performance of equipment, vehicles and water storage, and conveyance infrastructure.
  • Manage construction projects and improvements for the district.
  • Supervise maintenance, shop, and other assigned personnel as necessary in carrying out day to day district operations.
  • Participate in the development and administration of the water operations budget; forecast funds needed for staffing, equipment, materials, and supplies; approve expenditures and implement budgetary adjustments as appropriate and necessary.
  • Explain, justify and defend water operations programs, policies, and activities; negotiate and resolve sensitive and controversial issues.
  • Represent water operations to other District departments and outside agencies; coordinate water operations activities with those of other departments and outside agencies and organizations and other water districts.
  • Develop, coordinate and manage water conservation activities.
  • Attend and participate in professional group meetings; stay abreast of new trends and innovations in the field of irrigation water distribution.
  • Respond to and resolve difficult and sensitive customer inquires and complaints.
  • Perform related duties and responsibilities as required.

Typical Physical Activities

  • Travels frequently in conducting District business.
  • Communicates orally and in writing with District Board members, co-workers, and the public in face-to-face, one-to-one and group settings.
    • Regularly uses a telephone and radio for communication.
    • Uses office equipment such as computer terminals, copiers, and FAX machines.
    • Sits for extended time periods.
    • Hearing and vision within normal range.

Employment Standards

Knowledge of:

  • Construction principles and practices – pipelines, concrete, earthen structures
  • Heavy equipment operations – dozers, excavators, backhoes, etc.
  • Operations, services and activities of irrigation water distribution systems.
  • Management skills to analyze programs, policies and operational needs.
  • Principles and practices of program development and administration.
  • Principles and practices of budget preparation and administration.
  • Principles of supervision, training and performance evaluation.
  • Pertinent Federal, State, and local laws, codes and regulations.
  • Computer use and associated software (Microsoft Office) and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)


Ability to:

  • Plan, organize, coordinate, and direct the work of staff to achieve efficient operations and meet program goals.
    • Collect, organize, and analyze data on a variety of topics.
  • Analyze problems, identify alternative solutions, project consequences of proposed actions and implement recommendations in support of goals.
    • Prepare concise and comprehensive reports.
    • Exercise leadership, authority, and supervision tactfully and effectively.
  • Research, analyze, and evaluate new service delivery methods and techniques to existing District operations, programs, and services.
  • Provide advice and consultation to the Operations Manager on the development of ordinances, regulations, programs, and policies.
  • Establish and maintain cooperative working relationships with co-workers, the Board, outside agencies, and the public.
  • Interpret and apply Federal, State and local policies, laws and regulations.
  • Communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing.
  • Establish and maintain effective working relationships with those contacted in the course of work.

Environmental Factors

  • Exposure to the sun:  25% to 100% work time spent outside a building and exposed to the sun.
  • Work above floor level:  Infrequent use of ladders or other work surfaces from 1 to 12 feet above ground.
  • Temperature:  Exposure to sub-zero to 100 degree temperatures.
  • Humidity:  Seldom work in areas with unusually high humidity.
  • Wetness:  Less than 10% of the work time getting part or all of the body and/or clothing wet.
  • Noise:  Occasional vicinity of constant/intermittent/loud noises/sounds.
  • Slippery surfaces:  Frequent exposure to unusually wet and/or slippery surfaces.
  • Dust:  Frequent exposure to work areas with small to large amounts of dust present.
  • Confined/Restricted Spaces: Infrequent entry into confined/restricted work environments.
  • Any combination of education and experience that would likely provide the necessary knowledge and abilities is qualifying.

Desirable Qualifications


  • A typical way to obtain the knowledge and abilities would be:


Education:  A Bachelor’s or Associates degree from an accredited college or university with major course work in Engineering, Agriculture, Agricultural Engineering, or Construction Management is desired.


Experience: Five years related experience, with two years in a management or supervisory capacity. Experience working with or within a public agency is a plus as well as the responsibility for the implementation of programs and development and administration of budgets.


License/Certificate/Registration Requirement

  • Possession of a valid Oregon Class C Driver License may be required at the time of appointment. Failure to obtain or maintain such required license(s) may be cause for disciplinary action.


Possession and proof of a good driving record as evidenced by freedom from multiple or serious traffic violations or accidents for at least two (2) years duration. The driving record will not contribute to an increase in the District's automobile rates.


Other Requirements

The Watermaster/Construction Superintendent must live within a reasonable response distance – preferably the Madras, Oregon area.  District housing may be made available for the position.  During the irrigation season the position requires over-time and rotational on-call responsibilities.



The Watermaster/Construction Superintendent classification is considered a “Safety Sensitive” position.


The specific statements shown in each section of this job description are not intended to be all-inclusive.  They represent typical elements and criteria necessary to successfully perform the job and meeting the needs of the District.