Washington State General Permit Writer (Environmental Specialist 5) in Lacey, Washington


Keeping Washington Clean and Evergreen

Protecting Washington State's environment for current and future generations is what we do every day at Ecology. We have 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, Ecology is a good fit.

The Water Quality Program (WQP) is looking to fill a General Permit Writer (Environme*ntal* Specialist 5) position. The position will be located in our Headquarters Building in Lacey, WA.

The General Permit Writerposition serves as the senior program expert responsible for developing general permits, policies, procedures, regulations and guidance related to wastewater discharges and the effect on the receiving environment. In addition this position assists with general permit development, management and administration to support beneficial uses of state waters.

We are looking for applicants who are organized and have excellent written and verbal communication skills, a service focus, and the ability to work well with others in a team environment.

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. Maybe you've seen some of our recent stories on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or our blog. To learn more about our agency, please visit our website at www.ecy.wa.gov.

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


The mission of the Water Quality Program (WQ) is to protect and restore Washington's waters to sustain healthy watersheds and communities. Our work ensures that state waters support beneficial uses including recreational and business activities, supplies for clean drinking water, and the protection of fish, shellfish, wildlife, and public health.

Some of the key work activities of the General Permit Writerposition are:

  • Serves as the senior program expert responsible for developing general permits, policies, procedures, regulations and guidance related to wastewater discharges and the effect on the receiving environment.
  • Serves as the senior program expert on the development and implementation of general permit-related technical, policy and legal issues associated general permits.
  • Is responsible to plan, design, and carry out projects based on broad legal requirements and independent decision-making authority to determine work objectives to meet agency goals and priorities.
  • Writes general wastewater/stormwater permits, fact sheets, and response to comments.
  • Leads permit writing and permit implementation teams, especially teams associated with the industrial stormwater and other stormwater general permits.
  • Responds to permit appeals and leads internal and external outreach activities related to general permits.
  • Advises program management and staff of policies, priorities, and program/cross program issues related to general permits.
  • Works with other programs and agencies in identifying information required for policy development, legislation, regulations, and recommended priorities related to general permits.
  • Provides expertise and technical assistance to internal and external parties related to implementing general permits including questions on enforcement, monitoring, effluent limitations, BMPs, permit applicability and general conditions.
  • Leads ISGP permit implementation Team and WQP's internal General Permit Workgroup.
  • Acts as a policy specialist, responsible for long-range policy development and strategy for the industrial stormwater general permit and other general permits as needed.
  • Evaluates databases/inventories (i.e. PARIS and Facility Site) for policy or regulation development; determines new, changing or emerging requirements for databases/inventories; may work with other programs or agencies on database/inventory requirements.
  • Serves as the agency expert for the development, implementation, and evaluation of state and federal programs to mitigate and prevent environmental contamination or damage related to industrial stormwater practices and facilities.
  • Serves as an agency representative on state, regional, national or multistate commissions, environmental panels, and scientific organizations. Provides expert opinion on water pollution impacts and environmental controls for stormwater. Lends expertise to other Ecology programs to assist in their evaluation of stormwater impacts and control.
  • Reviews, guides, and approves complex environmental studies on significant impacts related to permitting and stormwater. Has lead responsibility on controversial or critical plans for resource management, policy or regulation development.
  • Drafts or reviews agency rules, policies, and guidelines related to general permits and stormwater management.
  • Works with other programs and agencies in identifying information required for policy development, legislation, regulations and recommended priorities, scheduling requirements, information parameters on stormwater general permit issues to program management.
  • Advises program management on violations of critical/controversial agency interest, monitoring/sampling policies, priorities, effectiveness and cross-media or agency issues and requirements related to stormwater general permits.
  • Represents agency and testifies at legal or public hearings or conferences and is the agency expert on legal issues related to permitting.
  • Applies professional scientific expertise to evaluate project impacts on the environment, review waste water permit applications, and issue discharge permits.
  • Responds directly to highly complex and/or politically sensitive inquiries for technical assistance requiring expert wastewater permitting knowledge.

This position will remain open until filled. The next screening will be October 14, 2016. In order to be considered for the next screening, please submit an application on or before October 13, 2016. The agency reserves the right to make an appointment any time after the initial screening date.


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.

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.

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.

The 1 year of experience as an Environmental Specialist 4 can include a combination of the following: 1) Serves in the teaching, training and mentoring of junior staff. 2) Is assigned responsibility for more complex and difficult projects and permits. 3) Is assigned multiple regulatory responsibility. 4) Directs or coordinates non-agency employees at large spills or complex sites. 5) Represents agency and testifies at legal or public hearings or conferences. 6) Serves as a historical resource or technical expert in one or more subject areas. 7) Serves as project manager and coordinator on complex projects. 8) Project administration and environmental technical assistance on high priority environmental issues requiring technical expertise.

Desired Qualifications:

Experience writing waste water discharge permits or water quality certifications. Investigator experience. Experience with enforcing Washington state laws or Federal Clean Water Act Requirements.

Special Requirements / Conditions of Employment:

Must possess a valid driver's license.

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 Kathleen Emmett at: kathleen.emmett@ecy.wa.gov. Please do not contact Kathleen Emmett 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. All employees covered by the collective bargaining agreement (CBA) with the WFSE will, as a condition of employment, either become members of the WFSE and pay membership dues or, as non-members, pay a representation fee as described in the CBA, no later than the 30th day following the effective date of this CBA or the beginning of their employment.

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.

Job Type: Full Time - Permanent

Job Number: 2016-WQ3312-07569

Department: Dept. of Ecology

Closing: Continuous

Agency: State of Washington

Address: View Job Posting for Agency Information View Job Posting for Location, Washington, 98504.

Website: http://www.careers.wa.gov

Salary: $53,016.00 - $69,648.00 Annually

Location: Thurston County – Lacey, WA