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Employment Type:
Full time
Job Category:
SWRO Water Master (Environmental Specialist 5)
(This job is no longer available)
State of Washington | Lacey, WA
Grad Date

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Job Description


Keeping Washington Clean and Evergreen

Protecting Washington State's environment for current and future generations is what we do every day at Ecology. We are a culture that is invested in making a difference. If you want to join a team that is highly effective, collaborative, has leadership that embraces the value of people, and believes in the fun factor, Ecology is a good fit.

The Water Resources program (WR) within the Department of Ecology is looking to fill a SWRO Water Master (Environmental Specialist 5) position. This position is located in our Southwest Regional Office (SWRO) in Lacey, WA.

The SWRO Water Master position oversees the Water Resources Program's enforcement and compliance work in Pierce, Thurston, Lewis, Mason, Clallam and Grays Harbor Counties. The position is the regional expert in this field and addresses water use violations through education, technical assistance and/or informal or formal enforcement, as appropriate. The position responds to complaints of illegal use, impairment of senior rights, and other highly complex water-resources compliance issues with conflicting interests among the parties and broad public impacts. The position works with the regional section manager to develop and implement the region's water resource management strategies and priorities for assigned Central Puget watersheds.

We are looking for applicants who understand the complexities of Washington water law, have superior field and office investigative skills, and are comfortable communicating with diverse groups.

As an agency, our mission is to protect, preserve and enhance Washington's environment for current and future generations. We invest in our employees to create and sustain a working environment that encourages creative leadership, effective resource management, teamwork, professionalism and accountability.

To learn more about The Department of Ecology, please visit our website at www.ecology.wa.gov and follow, like or visit us on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or our blog.

Local efforts... Diverse people... Statewide impacts


The mission of the Water Resources program (WR) is to manage water resources to meet the current and future needs of the natural environment and Washington's communities.

Some of the key work activities of the SWRO Water Master position are:

Water master and enforcement and compliance expert for Pierce, Thurston, Lewis, Mason, Clallam and Grays Harbor Counties.

* In close cooperation with the SWRO Regional Section Manager, and the WRIAs 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15 and 22/23 Streamflow Restoration Leads, develops a coordinated regional strategy for enforcement and compliance to protect instream resources within the Southwest Region, with emphasis in WRIAs 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15 and 22/23.
* Conducts and oversees the regulation and enforcement of water rights to determine compliance with water resource laws, regulations, settlements, agreements, and court decrees. Effectively negotiates and resolves water right conflicts, when possible
* Responds to and investigates complaints of illegal water use or impairment of existing water rights (including instream flow rights) and takes action to achieve compliance/enforcement of provisions of the water code in watersheds within the assigned counties. This work includes on-site investigations, interviews with affected parties, and collection of detailed information and field data. Works collaboratively with the SWRO Water Resources Section's ES-3 level compliance and enforcement specialist.
* Has the delegated authority to impose immediate on-site regulatory actions, recommend subsequent off-site regulatory actions, and performs follow-up inspections to ensure compliance is achieved.
* Develops recommendation to the regional section manager regarding compliance actions, including all orders and penalties, drafts "Recommendations for Enforcements." Briefs regional leadership team, Water Resources Leadership Team, and Executive Leadership Team, depending on the visibility, complexity, and severity of the enforcement and/or penalty recommendation. Develops and prepares expert testimony for presentation to the Pollution Control Hearings Board and higher courts. Testifies as an expert witness in administrative and court hearings.
* Provides guidance to and helps oversee the work of the region's metering staff, and provides training and mentorship to new regional permit writers, in coordination with the regional section manager and technical/permitting unit supervisor.

Actively tracks and accounts for previously-issued mitigated water rights and provides support to regional permitting staff on permit maintenance questions, as they relate to compliance with the issued water right(s).

* Develops a regional approach for tracking, accounting for, and providing technical assistance to water right holders provisioned on mitigation. Works with permit writers and with permittees to educate them of best practices related to long-term accountability related to provisioned water rights.
* Provides technical assistance and guidance to permit writers and to permittees related to permit maintenance questions.

Provides technical assistance and customer service on highly complex permitting and water resource management questions

* Responds to public inquiries concerning water right applications, the water right permitting process, and the status of pending water right applications and permits.
* Provides technical assistance to a wide variety of stakeholders, including government agencies, municipalities, tribes, private industry, and the general public. Effectively communicates technical information clearly, both verbally and in writing.

This recruitment will remain open until filled. The initial screening will be July 15, 2019. In order to be considered for the initial screening, please submit an application on or before July 14, 2019. The agency reserves the right to make an appointment any time after the initial screening date.

Please Note: This recruitment is open to current Department of Ecology employees only. This includes employees working on temporary and project assignments at the Department of Ecology.


Required Qualifications:

A Bachelor's degree involving major study in environmental, physical, or one of the natural sciences, environmental planning or other allied field AND six years of professional-level experience in environmental analysis or control, or environmental planning, which includes two years equal to an Environmental Specialist 3 or above.

Additional qualifying experience will substitute, year for year, for education.


A Master's degree in one of the above fields and four years of professional-level experience as required above which includes two years equal to an Environmental Specialist 3 or above.


A Ph.D. in one of the above fields and three years of professional-level experience as required above which includes two years equal to an Environmental Specialist 3 or above.


One year of experience as an Environmental Specialist 4 within Ecology.

The 2 years of experience as an Environmental Specialist 3 can include a combination of the following: 1) investigating and / or resolving complaints involving science or technology content, 2) performing inspections, 3) drafting technical evaluations and reports, 4) develops plans for researching information used for technical projects, regulatory or policy development, 5) plan and facilitate public meetings and hearings, 6) project work requiring specialized knowledge of industry processes, pollutant sources or natural processes, 7) providing technical assistance for complex scientific content and/ or support for implementing scientific content programs, 8) conducting tests, analyzing and evaluating data, 9) using environmental databases to support technical projects, 10) developing scientific studies and resource management plans, 11) providing environmental technical and administrative assistance to grant/ contract/ loan recipients of environmental protection projects.

Preferred/Desired Qualifications:

* Knowledge and experience working with Washington State water code.
* Advanced investigation skills, including experience using geospatial tools, accessing a wide range of public records, and an understanding of the public land survey system.
* Skills and abilities required to represent Ecology regarding highly complex and/or controversial water allocation issues when interacting with local, state and federal agencies and water user groups.

Why work for Ecology?

Joining Ecology means becoming a part of a team committed to protecting and restoring Washington State's environment.

A career in public service allows you to help solve some of the most challenging problems facing our state, while keeping the health and financial security of you and your family a priority. We combine one of the most competitive benefits packages in the nation with a strong commitment to work/life balance.

Ecology employees may be eligible for the following:

Medical/Dental/Vision for employee & dependent(s), Public Employees Retirement System (PERS), Vacation, Sick, and other Leave*, 11 Paid Holidays per year*, Public Service Loan Forgiveness, Tuition Waiver, Long Term Disability & Life Insurance, Deferred Compensation Programs, Dependent Care Assistance Program (DCAP), Flexible Spending Arrangement (FSA), Employee Assistance Program, Commute Trip Reduction Incentives, Combined Fund Drive, SmartHealth

Student debt and how working for Ecology can help

Employees may be eligible for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program, which forgives the remaining balance on your Direct Loans after you have made 120 qualifying monthly payments under a qualifying repayment plan while working full-time for a qualifying employer. See https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/repay-loans/forgiveness-cancellation/public-service for more details.

* See the Benefits tab in this announcement for more information

Supplemental Information

Application Instructions:

Please include the following documents as an attachment to your application:

* A cover letter describing how your experience, skills and abilities meet the required qualifications of this position.
* A resume outlining your professional experience.

Please complete the applicant profile when applying for this position. Or, you may paste the text of your resume within the profile's resume text field.

Please read the supplemental questions carefully and answer completely. Incomplete responses, including "please see resume" may disqualify you from further consideration.

Department of Ecology employees, please make sure to answer the agency-wide questions regarding permanent status as a classified employee within the Washington General Service or Washington Management Service. Do not forget to select Department of Ecology as a response to question 2, and type your personnel ID number for question 3. If you are not sure of your status or do not know your personnel ID number, please contact Human Resources at (360) 407-6186.

If you are reading this announcement in print format, please visit www.careers.wa.gov to access the online recruitment system. Click on "Look for Jobs" and select Dept. of Ecology under the "Department" search list. Click "Apply Search."

Other Information:

If you need assistance applying for this job, please call Human Resources at (360) 407-6186 or e-mail careers@ecy.wa.gov. Please do not call this number or send an email to this address to follow-up the status of your application. You can view the latest status of your application on your profile's main page.

If you have specific questions about the position, please email Mike Gallagher at: mike.gallagher@ecy.wa.gov. Please do not contact Mike to inquire about the status of your application.

The act of submitting application materials electronically is considered affirmation that the information is complete and truthful. The state may verify this information and any untruthful or misleading answers are cause for rejection of your application or dismissal if employed.

This position is included in the Washington Federation of State Employees (WFSE) union bargaining unit for the Department of Ecology.

The Washington State Department of Ecology is an equal opportunity employer. We strive to create a working environment that includes and respects cultural, racial, ethnic, sexual orientation and gender identity diversity. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, persons of disability, persons over 40 years of age, veterans or people with military status, and people of all sexual orientations and gender identities are encouraged to apply. Persons needing accommodation in the application/testing process or this job announcement in an alternative format may call (360) 407-6186. Applicants who are deaf or hard of hearing may call the Washington Relay Service by dialing 7-1-1 or 1-800-833-6388.

About State of Washington

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