The Rural Development Specialist (RDS) will provide technical, managerial, and financial (TMF) assistance to small disadvantaged community water and wastewater systems, and colonias, so that they can operate sustainably and deliver quality services to the communities served. This position will focus primarily on providing financial management assistance to develop infrastructure projects and sustainable utility practices. The RDS will also facilitate discussions for utilities considering partnerships and consolidations with other systems.
Specific job goals, objectives and tasks are established for each employee as part of the annual evaluation and work plan process. Duties and Responsibilities include but are not limited to:
- Conduct assessments of community systems’ TMF capacities
- Provide a wide range of utility financial management services (development of budgets, capital improvement plans, rate studies, financial reports to funders).
- Provide technical assistance to rural utilities to address TMF capacity issues
- Develop work plans to address system needs and coordinate RCAC work in communities
- Provide guidance and advice to rural utilities that are undertaking infrastructure capital improvement projects, with an emphasis on wastewater improvement projects
- Provide board training and guide local utility boards through the requirements or conditions associated with any grant or loan funds they receive
- Promote community partnerships to maximize limited resources, where applicable
- Plan, prepare, and deliver group and one-on-one adult trainings and workshops
- Perform other duties as assigned
Skills and Qualifications
- Ability to work with minimum supervision and handle multiple priorities simultaneously
- Commitment to rural communities, wastewater and/or public health issues
- Ability to listen effectively and communicate verbally and in writing
- Expertise in wastewater treatment processes, operations, and technology
- Expertise in project management and infrastructure capital improvement projects
- Familiarity with financing options for rural utilities
- Knowledge of principles of utility management
- Knowledge of government programs and regulations related to water and wastewater
- Proficiency with personal computers, including cloud computing and Microsoft Office
- Previous experience working with tribally-owned utilities highly desirable
Physical Job Requirements:
The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this position. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
Work performed in an office requires ability to operate computers and various pieces of office equipment, including telephone. Use may be moderate (average 2 hours per day) to heavy (4 or more hours per day)
While performing the duties of this position, the employee is frequently required to stand and/or sit for prolonged periods of time; walk; talk; hear; use hand to finger; handle; feel or operate objects, tools or controls; and reach with hands and arms. The employee is occasionally required to climb or balance; stoop, kneel, crouch or crawl.
The employee may occasionally lift and or move up to 25 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception and the ability to adjust focus.
This position also requires moderate (up to 2 days per month) to heavy (up to 10 days per month) automobile and airline travel, including overnight travel.
Preferred Education and Experience:
A combination of experience and education is required to qualify for the position.
A typical qualifying combination would be:
Five (5) years of any combination of applicable experience in environmental project management, water or wastewater facilities management or related environmental fields (if a higher level of related education is possessed than is required, this education may be substituted for the experience requirement up to a maximum of one year).
Bachelor’s degree (additional qualifying experience may be substituted for the required education).
Complete course work and pass associated test(s) for 11 core competency courses and achieve internal trainer certification within two years of the date of hire, as required by RCAC’s environmental staff competencies program
Possession of a valid drivers’ license and proof of insurance that meets the minimum requirements of RCAC corporate liability policy will be required when traveling for business purposes.
RCAC employees are federally mandated to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as a condition of employment, subject to reasonable accommodation as required by law.