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Natural Resources Biologist

Maricopa County

Phoenix ,  Arizona

The purpose of this position is to perform work under general supervision of considerable difficulty in the planning, analysis, survey, investigation, documentation, and presentation of natural resources/biology, as well as in a variety of other environmental areas, and possess a working knowledge/collaboration/collection in areas such as cultural, and hazardous materials.

Position Qualifications:

Minimum education and/or experience:
Bachelor's degree in Environmental Sciences, Natural Resources Biology or related field and two (2) years' work experience in Natural Resources Biology and/or with environmental regulations and policies, and directing or conducting environmental studies and preparing environmental documents. Master's degree in a related field may substitute for one (1) year of the work experience requirement.

Specialized training, certifications, and/or other special requirements:
Must possess, or have the ability to obtain by the time of hire, a valid Arizona driver's license. Position may require technical certifications or training for some work assignments (e.g. Western Burrowing Owl surveys, Migratory Bird Treaty Act bird/nest surveys, wetlands/Waters of the United States jurisdictional delineations training, etc.).

Knowledge, skills, and abilities:
Knowledge of State and Federal environmental regulations (Native Plant Law, National Environmental Policy Act, Clean Water Act, etc.), guidelines, policies, legislation, trends and standards. Knowledge of road construction methods, transportation terminology, reading/interpreting roadway plans, government policy, environmental impacts, and planning methods. Knowledge of environmental methods, theories, concepts, methodology, and techniques. Knowledge of environmental survey (plant, animal, habitat, etc.) procedures. Skill in conducting natural resources survey work (bird nest surveys, habitat assessments, native plant surveys, etc.). Skill in assessing and prioritizing multiple tasks, projects and demands. Skill in analyzing environmental conflict issues and preparing recommendations/mitigation based on findings. Skill in identifying, evaluating, and mitigating effects of impacts on environmental/natural resources. Skill in establishing and maintaining effective/collaborative working relations with co-workers and other Divisions within the Maricopa County Department of Transportation. Skill in planning, organizing, and coordinating natural resources/environmental surveys. Skill in operating a personal computer utilizing a variety of business software. Skill in effective communication, verbal and written, with various Federal, State, and Local government agencies and the public. Skill in preparing various permits (Native Plant Law, Section 404 & 401, etc.). Skill in conducting environmental assessments and biological reviews. Skill in preparing/writing various levels of environmental documentation (Categorical Exclusions, Environmental Determination Reports, Biological Assessments, Biological Reviews, etc.). Ability to identify potential natural resources/environmental conflicts on future project sites. Ability to provide environmental guidance and recommendations on projects.

Preferred education and/or experience:
Five (5) or more years' related work experience. One (1) or more years' public sector related experience. Experience with Migratory Bird Treaty Act bird/nest surveys; experience native plant and noxious/invasive weed identification.

Preferred training, certifications and/or other special requirements:
Certification by the Arizona Game and Fish Department to perform Western Burrowing Owl surveys; wetland delineation training; Army Corps of Engineers Waters of the United States delineation training; other wildlife species survey training.

Working conditions:
Must be able to work in a normal, indoor office environment. Must be able to work outdoors in a roadway project environment or in an isolated desert environment, in varied/extreme weather conditions (100+ degree Fahrenheit, dusty/windy, rain, etc.). Must have manual dexterity of hands to operate: office equipment; motor vehicles, hiking/walking in varied terrain outdoors. Must be able to manage frequent interruptions, time pressures, high work volumes, multiple and complicated tasks, unscheduled tasks, team-oriented activities, prompt decision-making and interaction with government officials and the public. Must constantly maintain concentration, accuracy, ethical behavior and a professional demeanor. Must be able to file and lift/carry/push and/or pull 25 pounds.

Essential Job Tasks:
Provides technical expertise and project support to engineering staff, project engineers and others regarding environmental and natural resources compliance and regulations. Conducts natural resources and environmental analyses, prepares reports, makes recommendations, and coordinates efforts with other agencies to assure compliance with statutes, rules, regulations, and policies governing environmental (National Environmental Policy Act, Section 404 Clean Water Act, Migratory Bird Treaty Act, Native Plant Law, Natural Resources, etc.) issues. Manages projects, conducts analyses, coordinates agency interests and provides technical expertise to help the organization get authorization for construction by coordinating environmental outcomes with interested parties. Develops and formally documents environmental recommendations. Coordinates timing, precision, accuracy, and execution of project specific environmental protection activities; develops mitigation measures and necessary documentation for clearance of sites/project areas and exclusion from further environmental impact studies. Reviews documents, gathers valid scientific information, and prepares correspondence related to diverse natural resources/environmental issues; provides information to public and other agencies. Maintains fluency with current technical and non-technical environmental information; represents MCDOT on committees and planning groups. Performs natural resources field surveys and other environmental surveys/investigations using sound scientific methods. Develops project scopes and budgets; manages consultant contracts; provides technical review of reports; conducts formal and informal agency consultations; defines issues and implements solutions. Makes presentations and provides regional leadership on environmental issues. Facilitates multidisciplinary scientific data collection. Performs other duties as assigned.

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