Water Resources Rule Development Lead

Lacey, WA, United States 🇺🇸

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 Water Resources Rule Development Lead(Environmental Planner 5) position. The position is located in our Headquarters Building in Lacey, WA.
 The Water Resources Rule Development Lead position facilitates resolution of water resource conflicts by determining water allocation. The work is critical to maintaining and restoring stream flows necessary to protect and recover salmon populations in Washington. This position supports the Program Manager in coordinating efforts between regions, between programs and between agencies to develop rules that comply with water resource statutes and the Administrative Procedures Act, working closely with staff outside the program, including agency managers, policy staff, watershed planning groups, economists, attorneys, and scientists and a variety of other stakeholders.
We are looking for applicants who have strong communications skills are able to handle conflict in a positive and respectful manner and are able to work in a changing environment.
As an agency, 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 TwitterFacebookInstagram or our blog.
To learn more about our agency, please visit our website at www.ecology.wa.gov


Agency Mission:  Ecology’s mission is to protect, preserve and enhance Washington’s environment and to promote the wise management of our air, land and water for the benefit of current and future generations. 
Program Mission: 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 Water Resources Rule Development Lead position are:

  • Leads team efforts to establish and implement rules to protect stream flows.
  • Evaluates laws and court decisions for implications to the streamflow protection program, and writes guidance to implement the changes.
  • Provides technical and policy guidance to management, often working with a team, about issues related to streamflow protection and instream resources.
  • Prepares agency responses to petitions for rule amendment, repeal, or adoption under the Administrative Procedures Act.
  • Submits the annual report to the legislature on instream flow setting.

This position:

  • Writes rules and guidance documents.
  • Drafts letter responses to stakeholders on a wide variety of topics and issues.
  • Creates a collaborative environment in all team efforts that they lead.
  • Develops external relationships with stakeholders, and partner agencies, and build trust.

 This position has an opportunity to:

  • Solve a wide range of problems relating to protecting instream resources. Understanding and addressing the legal, social, and technical drivers for the needed level of instream flow protection. Developing instream flow protection regulations that can be effectively administered with available resources. Addressing basin-specific needs while trying to achieve consistency state-wide. 
  • Manage complex, controversial rule adoption processes, managing timing constraints, and complying with the Administrative Procedures Act.

Interesting aspects of this position:

  • This position gives you the chance to influence how our state protects vital resources as the population increases.
  • It’s never boring. It is a good job for someone with lots of innate curiosity.
  • Water is becoming the most valuable natural resource in many parts of the world, understanding the legal and technical framework for water management will be an increasingly valuable skill set for any environmental manager.
  • So much of water management is driven by history, it is fascinating to learn about.

This recruitment will remain open until filled. The initial screening will be April 2, 2018.  In order to be considered for the initial screening, please submit an application on or before April 1, 2018. The agency reserves the right to make an appointment any time after the initial screening date.



Required Qualifications:

A Master’s degree with a major emphasis in land use, urban, regional, environmental or natural resources planning or management, environmental law, environmental or public policy, or closely related planning or science field


Five (5) years of professional experience in land use, urban, regional, environmental or natural resources planning or management, environmental law, environmental or public policy, or closely related planning or science field. 

A PhD in one of the above-fields may substitute for one (1) year of experience.

Desired Qualifications

Knowledge and experience in the following areas:
  • Watershed planning and management.
  • Land use planning under Washington’s Growth Management Act.
  • Water resources laws, water resources policy and science especially related to instream flow protection and enhancement.

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.”