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Environmental Specialist - Science and Engineering Division

The Principles that Guide Us:
Tacoma, the City of Destiny, has a workforce of dedicated, talented employees with unique skills and perspectives. We embrace innovation and strive for excellence and community engagement. The Principles that Guide Us, Integrity, Service, Excellence and Equity, speak to the values that we embody as City of Tacoma employees, and represent the core of our work in public service.
The City of Tacoma Environmental Service Department is responsible for the maintenance and operations of the solid waste, stormwater and wastewater utilities. The department has recently completed its new strategic plan that will guide the department through 2025. The plan empowers the employees to continue to make the department a stronger organization and to continue to be an industry leader.
We believe everything we do supports healthy neighborhoods and a thriving Puget Sound leaving a better Tacoma for all.

The Environmental Programs Group (EPG) has the responsibility to ensure compliance with the City’s NPDES Phase I Municipal Stormwater Permit (Permit) issued by the WA Dept. of Ecology. Work includes interpreting Permit requirements, developing and managing programs and developing procedures to meet Permit requirements, documenting Permit compliance, analyzing data and preparing reports and other technical documents.

If the below list of personal traits sounds like you, then you are just the type of person we are looking for to join our team as an Environmental Specialist in the Environmental Programs Group. 
  • Inquisitive
  • Have a strong attention to detail and accuracy
  • Strong personal motivation and drive – an ambitious self-starter
  • Excellent collaboration and facilitation skills with internal and external customers
  • Enjoy working as part of a team
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills

Job Duties (associated with this position):
  • Work with and have knowledge of federal, state, and local environmental laws, regulations, and policies; including the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Municipal Stormwater Permit.
  • Develop, manage, and implement NPDES Programs.
  • Gather, analyze and process data for inclusion with technical reports and NPDES Permit Annual Report
  • Assist in developing and technical editing of technical manuals, grant applications and other types of applications
  • Assist with outreach, coordination and permitting for various projects and programs
  • Develop and manage contracts for services related to EPG programs including NPDES compliance and grant programs.
  • Assist in developing standard operating procedures.
  • Track activities and training participation for compliance with the NPDES Permit.
  • Review constructions plans, maintenance records and other sources of information for the stormwater system to keep asset management datasets current.
  • Facilitate meetings and user groups
  • Identify Stormwater Management Flow Control and Water Quality BMPs/Facilities on construction plan sets and compare to attributes in asset management datasets
  • Have a working knowledge of the Stormwater Management Manual for Western Washington or other WA State Dept. of Ecology approved equivalent manual and NPDES  Municipal Stormwater Permits.
To see the full class specification for the Environmental Specialist position please click here

City of Tacoma Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion
Tacoma's diversity is its greatest asset. Tacoma embraces its multi-cultural and multi-ethnic character. Communities of color and immigrant communities are fundamental to Tacoma's entrepreneurial spirit, workforce, and long-term success. In Tacoma, equity and empowerment are top priorities, meaning that all Tacoma residents must have equitable opportunities to reach their full potential and share in the benefits of community progress. One of our goals is for the City of Tacoma workforce to reflect the community it serves. We actively work to eliminate racial and other disparities and welcome candidates with diverse backgrounds and/or multicultural skill sets and experiences. Our goal is for Tacoma to be an inclusive and equitable place to live, work, and play.

Physical Requirements and Working Conditions: 
Work is performed in an office setting which may require sitting in front of a computer for long periods of time. Work includes both office and field environments.
A Bachelor's degree in science, planning or a related environmental field


Two years of related work experience.

Experience may be substituted for education at a ratio of two years of experience for one year of education.
  • Valid Washington State Driver's License and maintenance thereafter. 
  • Must complete a 40-hour Personal Protection and Safety Certificate prior to completion of probation.
Knowledge & Skills
  • Apply principles, practices, methods and techniques of environmental science in assisting the City of Tacoma to meet its environmental obligations and goals.
  • Operate a personal computer and associated technical software.
  • Perform environmental field investigations and audits.
  • Interpret and apply federal, state, and local regulations and policies.
  • Conduct basic environmental science research.
  • Knowledge of federal, state, and local environmental laws, regulations, and policies.
  • Work from blueprints, shop drawings and sketches.
  • Gather data from diverse sources, analyze and evaluate situations, form conclusions, and develop timely solutions consistent with environmental policy, regulations, and technical feasibility.
  • Perform difficult and complex engineering mathematical computations.

  • Prepare effective oral and written communications for professional staff and the general public.
  • Explain complex environmental issues and regulations in support of City activities.
  • Understand and follow oral and written directions.
  • Correct English usage and grammar.

  • Establish and maintain cooperative and effective working relationships with internal project teams, regulators and City stakeholder groups.
  • Work independently.
  • Plan, coordinate, implement, and administer a comprehensive environmental project or program.
  • Cooperatively assist managers to effectively discharge their operational responsibilities.
  • Analyze situations accurately and adopt an effective course of action. 
  • Plan and organize work to meet schedules and deadlines.
  • Understand the organization, policies, and functions of City Government.

  • Maintain knowledge of various local, state, and federal environmental regulations.
  • Understand relevant technical and regulatory standards as they apply to the Specialist's area of responsibility. This includes acquiring licensure, registration, or certification in the technical discipline relevant to the work requirements.
Selection Process & Supplemental Information

To be considered for this career opportunity:
Please apply online through the City of Tacoma's website and attach a detailed resume and cover letter describing your experience, training, motivations, and expertise as it relates to the responsibilities of this position. Individuals must meet the minimum qualifications to progress in the examination process. 

Candidates who are eligible for Veteran's Preference scoring criteria must attach a copy of their DD-214 member copy 4, (proof of military discharge form) at time of applicationto be eligible for review for Veteran's Preference points, with redacted birth date and social security numbers.

Examination Process:
This is a competitive selection process. Applicants who meet the minimum qualifications will have their responses to the Supplemental Questions # 4-11 reviewed and scored by a committee of subject matter experts, as the Experience and Training TestIt is the responsibility of the applicants to adequately describe all pertinent experience and training. Please make sure you read the questions and provide complete informative answers, including your roles in the position and key activities.  DO NOT respond with see resume in lieu of answering these questions; this will result in a failing score. 
Applicants who pass the test will be placed on an Eligible List for potential interview and hiring consideration.

Per City of Tacoma Personnel Management Policy #170, the City of Tacoma is a drug-free work environment. Appointment is subject to passing a pre-employment background check and references check, a pre-employment medical exam, drug and alcohol screen and may include a physical ability test. 

New employees must successfully complete a nine-month probationary period prior to obtaining permanent status in this classification; any employee promoted into this position must successfully complete a six-month probationary period prior to obtaining permanent status in this classification.

Our City: 
With a population over 200,000, Tacoma is the second largest city in the Puget Sound region, gracing the shores of Commencement Bay. We are a diverse, progressive, international city that serves as a gateway to the Pacific Rim and the rest of the world. Named one of the most livable areas in the country by, Tacoma and the surrounding area is a playground for outdoor and maritime enthusiasts. Our businesses are vibrant, our parks are beautiful, our schools are exceptional and our housing is affordable.

When you work for the City of Tacoma you'll have an opportunity to enjoy a healthy work/life balance, the potential for flexible schedules (with some job classifications), continuing education programs, leadership pathways, wellness incentives and a total rewards benefits program. We welcome you to take a look at our website and discover how the City of Tacoma can make your next career move part of our combined destiny:
The City of Tacoma believes that each employee makes a significant contribution to our success. This job description is designed to outline primary duties, qualifications and job scope. The omission of specific statements of duties does not exclude them from the position if the work is similar, related or a logical assignment to the position.

Communication from the City of Tacoma: 
We primarily communicate via email during the application process. Emails from and/or must be placed on your safe domain list to ensure that you receive notifications in a timely manner. As a precaution, you may also want to check your junk email folders.

The online application system requires you to enter a substantial amount of information. Be prepared to spend at least an hour entering information. In order for your application materials to be considered, all information must be submitted by the closing date and time listed on this job announcement.

For assistance with the NEOGOV application process, or questions regarding this job announcement, call the Human Resources office at (253) 591.5400 before 4:00 pm of the closing date of the job announcement. The NEOGOV computer system automatically times-out at 5:00 pm and any application that has not been completed before then, will not be uploaded and accepted for this recruitment.