Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago

Supervising Environmental Specialist (#20002683)

General Statement

Under direction, coordinates administrative, technical and professional environmental activities in the implementation of the District's Sewage and Waste Control and User Charge Ordinances, or field operations activities of the Monitoring and Research Department.

Essential Job Functions

Essential job functions are fundamental, core functions common to positions in a classification.  They are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all job duties for any one position in the class.  Since class specifications are designed to be descriptive and not restrictive, incumbents may complete one or all of the job duties listed or tasks of similar kind not specifically listed here.

  • Provides technical advice and assistance to subordinate employees involved in the administration of the User Charge and Sewage and Waste Control Ordinances; supervises and reviews the preparation of all responses to related correspondence and reviews outgoing documents for accuracy, consistency and compliance with standards and regulations.
  • Coordinates technical aspects of User Charge appeals made to the Board of Commissioners and represents the Department at appeal hearings; provides the Law Department with recommendations for appeal resolution.
  • Analyzes Industrial Waste Division enforcement policies and enforcement practices for consistency and compliance with Federal requirements.
  • Coordinates the efforts of Pretreatment and Cost Recovery Section personnel with the Law and Engineering Departments and outside agencies; reviews changes in Federal and State regulations and prepares proposed District regulations.
  • Coordinates the District's compliance, enforcement and annual reporting as it pertains to Federal Pretreatment regulations.
  • Directs and supervises the inspection and sampling of industries discharging to the District's sewage system and the enforcement of waste control ordinances and verification of proper User Charge payments.
  • Coordinates investigations of pollution control violators, ensuring the necessary follow-up on continuing violations; reviews findings of investigations or pollutant discharges, spills, and related incidents; recommends needed corrective action.
  • Prepares section budget and supervises the control of expenditures; supervises the acquisition, distribution and maintenance of all equipment used in field operations.
  • Reviews and evaluates a variety of technical reports and prepares summary reports; coordinates the conduct of a variety of special projects and studies.
  • Assigns, supervises and reviews work; ensures staff compliance with District policies and procedures including Personnel Rules and Administrative Procedures; completes performance reviews; addresses employee complaints and grievances; may recommend employment actions such as hiring, transfer, suspension, promotion or discharge.

Other Job Functions

  • Coordinates activities in response to hazardous materials emergencies and other special investigations such as oil and fish kills; serves as liaison officer with other pollution regulatory agencies including USEPA and IEPA.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Environmental Conditions

Positions in this classification involve a combination of office work and work in the field.  Office work is performed in a typical office environment and requires the use of standard office equipment including computers.  Field work is performed outside the office and may involve exposure to industrial equipment or operations, contact with hazardous or toxic material and exposure to a variety of weather conditions.  Field work may also require the operation of a District vehicle.

Desirable Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Advanced knowledge of general environmental principles, practices and techniques.
  • Advanced knowledge of environmental technical principles, processes and procedures involved in industrial waste treatment, sewage treatment, flow measurement and monitoring.
  • Thorough knowledge of intergovernmental and District's standards and requirements as related to user charge procedures and regulations.
  • Thorough knowledge of the equipment, procedures and processes of industrial waste pretreatment including intergovernmental standards and requirements.
  • Thorough knowledge of the policies and provisions involved in the District's enforcement procedures.
  • Thorough knowledge of recent developments, current literature and sources of information in industrial treatment.
  • Ability to plan and supervise the work of professional and sub-professional staff over a wide geographic area.
  • Ability to plan, develop, oversee and evaluate the work of a complex administrative function.
  • Ability to express oneself clearly and concisely, orally and in writing.

Minimum Qualification Requirements

Graduation from a four-year accredited college or university majoring in environmental engineering, chemical engineering, chemistry, biology or a closely related field and six years of progressively responsible full-time, post-degree experience in industrial waste activities.  At least two years of this experience must have been in a supervisory capacity.


Graduate study in the designated fields may be substituted for the required non-supervisory experience on a year-for-year basis to a maximum of two years.  Sub-professional technical or professional experience in engineering, scientific, treatment plant operations or industrial waste activities may be substituted for the required education to a maximum of two years.

Promotional Requirement

  • One year of service with the District as a Senior Civil Engineer, Senior Engineer, Senior Environmental Research Scientist, or Senior Environmental Specialist.
  • Civil service status in one of the foregoing classifications.

CLASS: 20002683; EST: 1/1/2013; REV: 2/1/2023;