County of Alameda

Agricultural and Standards Investigator I (#8418)

Bargaining Unit: SEIU 1021 - Misc Sub/Para Prof (012)
$35.00-$42.02 Hourly / $2,625.00-$3,151.50 BiWeekly /
$5,687.50-$6,828.25 Monthly / $68,250.00-$81,939.00 Yearly

Under close supervision, the Agricultural and Standards Investigator I enforces state and federal laws and regulations and investigates violations of the California Food and Agricultural Code and the California Business and Professions Code. The Agricultural and Standards Investigator I assists in fruit, vegetable, honey and egg quality control inspections; inspection and testing of all commercial weighing and measuring devices; inspection of nurseries and seed dealers; inspection of pre-packaged commodities for accuracy of weight, measure, or count; inspections and investigations of point-of-sale transactions; the control and prevention of vertebrate, weed and agricultural pest infestations; pesticide use enforcement inspections and investigation to protect human health and the environment; and, performs related work as required.


Agricultural and Standards Investigator I is located in the Community Development Agency’s Agriculture/Weights and Measures Department which has various locations throughout Alameda County. Agricultural and Standards Investigator I is the entry level class in this technical series and is distinguished from the Agricultural and Standards Investigator II in that the latter performs technical inspections under general supervision in designated inspection areas. Incumbents train and work under the direction of an Agricultural and Standards Investigator II or higher-level classification. Incumbents are expected to obtain the necessary licenses and demonstrate satisfactory performance which qualifies them to promote and flex up to Agricultural and Standards Investigator II upon the completion of one year of full-time experience as an Agricultural and Standards Investigator I. Incumbents are required to obtain one of the five State-issued Agricultural Biologist licenses OR one of the three State-issued Weights and Measures licenses within twelve months of hire.

Non-licensed employees in this class, under close supervision, may be required to perform work in subjects in which they do not possess the required licenses. However, they will not be expected to issue inspection certificates or violation notices unless they possess a license in the given subject.

NOTE: The following are the duties performed by employees in this classification. However, employees may perform other related duties at an equivalent level. Each individual in the classification does not necessarily perform all duties listed.

1. Assist with inspection of fruits, nuts, vegetables, eggs and honey at point of origin, wholesale, or retail sites for compliance with standards; issue violation notices indicating required reconditioning and re-inspect for compliance; issue permits for disposal of agricultural products; and inspect produce for compliance with organic and direct marketing regulations.

2. Assist with inspection of, and test various types of weighing devices, such as retail, industrial, livestock and vehicle scales for accuracy within established tolerances; inspect and test various types of measuring devices, including petroleum products, electric, vapor, water, LPG, bulk plant, vehicle tank, taximeters, and odometers.

3. Assist with investigating complaints and possible violations or misrepresentations, and may prepare reports of findings; issue certificates of inspection and condemn or confiscate illegal equipment.

4. Assist with the inspection of nurseries and seed dealers for insect pests, plant diseases and noxious weeds, and may specify control procedures.

5. Inspect range and farm land, roadsides, warehouses, etc., to ascertain the degree and extent of rodent infestation; assist in determining appropriate control method to be used; apply rodenticides in a safe and effective manner; assist with mixing, packaging and labeling rodenticides.

6. Assist with inspection of, and test pre-packaged goods for correct weight, measure or count and for proper labeling; issue notices of violations as necessary; issue orders on short weight and measures packages off sale; inspect automated point-of-sale terminals, i.e., scanners, federal, state and local codes; and inspect weigh-master records for accuracy and compliance with State law.

7. Conduct surveys to locate infestations of noxious weeds, exotic insect pests and plant diseases; place and service insect traps; and respond to new pest infestations or threats, i.e. glassy-winged sharpshooter (GWSS), vine mealy bug (VMB), sudden oak death (SOD).

8. Assist with the inspection of plant materials and agricultural products shipped by common carriers for insect pests, plant diseases, weeds and for compliance with quarantines; assist with disposition of illegal shipments.

9. Assist with the inspection of applications of pesticides performed by licensed structural and agricultural pest control operators for compliance with applicable laws and regulations.

10. Cooperate with State personnel in the enforcement of State regulations regarding petroleum products and commodity advertising; and make undercover purchases in the course of investigations.

11. Assist with the inspection of pesticide storage areas, records and application equipment; and may participate in investigations of pesticide exposure/illness.

12. Explain Weights and Measures laws and regulations to merchants and the public.


Possession of a Bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university with specialization in agricultural or biological science, chemistry, physics, mathematics, engineering, or other job-related majors such as law enforcement, commerce, and marketing. The California Department of Food and Agriculture County Licensing Program reviews applicant college transcripts to make the final determination regarding qualifications for licensing examinations.

Special Requirements:

• All candidates must acquire at least one of the following eight County Agricultural Biologist and County Weights and Measures Inspector licenses issued by the California Department of Food and Agriculture within twelve months from date of hire: Pesticide Regulation; Investigation and Environmental Monitoring; Commodity Regulation; Integrated Pest Management; Pest Prevention and Plant Regulation; Weight Verification; Measurement Verification; and Transaction and Product Verification.

• Possession of a valid California Motor Vehicle Operator's license.

NOTE: The Civil Service Commission may modify the above Minimum Qualifications in the announcement of an examination.

NOTE: The level and scope of the following knowledge and abilities are related to duties listed under the "Examples of Duties" section of this specification.

Knowledge of:

• Federal, State and local agricultural weights and measures laws, regulations, procedures, and practices, and their application.
• Record-keeping systems.
• Basic Entomology, Botany, Biology and Chemistry.
• Agricultural pests and their control.
• Elementary physics and arithmetic.
• All safety practices relating to weights and measures, and agricultural activities and their application.
• Principles, mechanics, and care of equipment and testing devices, and of methods and techniques of inspecting.
• Current agricultural and weights and measures issues.

Ability to:

• Learn, interpret, explain and enforce local, state and federal laws and regulations pertinent to the work.
• Utilize standard methods of inspection and identification.
• Use appropriate safety clothing and equipment.
• Collect and identify important pests.
• Use and maintain sensitive mechanical weighing and measuring devices.
• Develop and maintain an effective working relationship with co-workers, business contacts, and the general public.
• Communicate orally, write effectively, and prepare complete and accurate reports and records. • Periodically perform strenuous physical tasks requiring a moderate degree of manual dexterity, which may involve lifting up to 50 pounds.
• Learn to operate specialized equipment (e.g. four-wheel drive vehicles, forklifts, all terrain vehicles, power sprayers, bait mixing and application equipment).

Newspecs: 8418.doc
DRH:cs 1/7/11
CSC Date: 6/29/11


Alameda County offers a comprehensive and competitive benefits package that affords wide-ranging health care options to meet the different needs of a diverse workforce and their families. We also sponsor many different employee discount, fitness and health screening programs focused on overall well being.  These benefits include but are not limited to*:

For your Health & Well-Being

  • Medical – HMO & PPO Plans
  • Dental – HMO & PPO Plans
  • Vision or Vision Reimbursement
  • Share the Savings
  • Basic Life Insurance 
  • Supplemental Life Insurance (with optional dependent coverage for eligible employees) 
  • County Allowance Credit
  • Flexible Spending Accounts - Health FSA, Dependent Care and Adoption Assistance
  • Short-Term Disability Insurance
  • Long-Term Disability Insurance
  • Voluntary Benefits - Accident Insurance, Critical Illness, Hospital Indemnity and Legal Services
  • Employee Assistance Program

For your Financial Future

  • Retirement Plan - (Defined Benefit Pension Plan)
  • Deferred Compensation Plan (457 Plan or Roth Plan)

For your Work/Life Balance

  • 12 paid holidays
  • Floating Holidays
  • Vacation and sick leave accrual
  • Vacation purchase program
  • Catastrophic Sick Leave
  • Group Auto/Home Insurance
  • Pet Insurance
  • Commuter Benefits Program
  • Guaranteed Ride Home
  • Employee Wellness Program (e.g. At Work Fitness, Incentive Based Programs, Gym Membership Discounts)
  • Employee Discount Program (e.g. theme parks, cell phone, etc.)
  • Child Care Resources
  • 1st United Services Credit Union 

*Eligibility is determined by Alameda County and offerings may vary by collective bargaining agreement.  This provides a brief summary of the benefits offered and can be subject to change.


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