Placer Employment Opportunities

Environmental Health - Trainee

Recruitment #2023-14518-01


Are you passionate about protecting public health and the environment? Searching for a rewarding career working in the community and one-on-one with residents and businesses? Want an opportunity to work outside of an office in an area known for its natural beauty? If you have an interest in science, problem solving, and having a positive impact in the lives of others, working for Placer County Health and Human Services Department - Environmental Health Division might be right for you. We are actively seeking highly motivated individuals to join our skilled team.

Under supervision, the Environmental Health Trainee performs scientific and professional level office and field work to ensure compliance with environmental laws and regulations.  

Staff will be assigned to one of the following programs: 
  • Consumer Protection: Ensures compliance with regulated food facilities, body art facilities, swimming pools, public drinking water systems, and campgrounds. 
  • Hazardous Materials (CUPA) and Solid Waste: Ensures compliance with laws and regulations pertaining to business facilities that handle hazardous material or hazardous waste, operate underground storage tanks, operate above ground storage tanks, emergency response to incidents involving hazardous chemical releases, and site mitigation. Conducts compliance inspections and supports solid waste disposal facilities and resource recovery and recycling programs, waste tire management, and nonhazardous waste recycling and management programs. 
  • Land Use and Water Use: Ensures compliance with state and local regulations pertaining to septic systems and water wells.  
This is a paid trainee position in the Environmental Health Specialist series. To be considered for this position, applicants must meet the minimum qualifications by possessing both the equivalent to a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university with major course work in any of the biological or physical sciences, environmental health science, engineering or a related field AND a letter of approval issued by the State of California Department of Public Health verifying eligibility for training. 

Note: This letter is a minimum requirement for the Environmental Health Trainee classification. Applicants must possess a valid letter at the time of applying for this recruitment to move forward in the recruitment process.

Individuals who do not possess the required letter by the State of California but are interested in pursuing a future career as a Registered Environmental Health Specialist, are encouraged to click HERE for more information. CPS HR has been contracted by the CA Department of Public Health to provide transcript evaluation services for Environmental Health Specialist (EHS) trainee, Options I-IV. All questions regarding transcript evaluation must be directed to CPS HR. Placer County Human Resources does not provide transcript evaluation services.

This recruitment will remain open until filled. To be included in the first round of application screening, submit your application by 5:00 PM on Tuesday, January 23, 2024. Following this date, applications will be screened on a bi-weekly basis until the positions are filled. 


The current vacancies are for positions based in the Auburn, CA office. The eligible list from this recruitment may also be used to fill future positions in the Auburn or Tahoe City, CA office. 
Tahoe Branch Assignment Premium - Employees permanently assigned to a position located in the North Lake Tahoe area qualify for the $1,000 per month Tahoe Branch Assignment Premium.

Upon completion of the State of California Environmental Health Trainee requirements and issuance of a State of California Environmental Health Specialist registration, applicants will be eligible to be promoted to Assistant Registered Environmental Health Specialist. As an Assistant Registered Environmental Health Specialist, you may be required to participate in the Stand-By-Rotation for emergency response.


Placer County offers a comprehensive benefits package to employees. The following information represents benefits currently available to permanent Placer County employees and may be subject to change. Applicants should inquire as to the most current benefit package during hiring interviews or by contacting the Human Resources Department.

Click here to view General benefits

For more information regarding the benefits Placer County has to offer, please visit Placer County's Human Resources website.


To learn, administer and enforce federal, state and local statutes, ordinances and regulations related to public health and sanitation as a Trainee; to learn to encourage sound sanitary and environmental health practices; and to learn to protect the environment and the public.


The Environmental Health Trainee is a training level classification in the Environmental Health Specialist Series established to qualify incumbents in the training and experience requirements to become a Registered Environmental Health Specialist with the State of California. This class is distinguished from the Registered Environmental Health Specialist by the performance of the less complex routine tasks and duties assigned to positions within this series.  Positions in this classification do not possess registration as an Environmental Health Specialist by the State of California. Employees at this level are expected to perform under guidance and direction.  Since this class is used as a training class, employees may have only limited or no directly related work experience.  Upon completion of the State of California Environmental Health Trainee requirements and issuance of a State of California Environmental Health Specialist registration number, incumbents meet the eligibility requirements for the flexibly staffed Assistant Registered Environmental Health Specialist classification.


Receives immediate and close supervision from the Supervising Environmental Health Specialist and may receive technical and functional supervision and training from an Assistant or Associate Registered Environmental Health Specialist.


Duties may include, but are not limited to, the following:

As a trainee, receive instructions and perform the following duties in a learning capacity:
  • Inspect and evaluate restaurants and other retail food establishments, public bathing, spa, and other recreational and institutional facilities; provide food handling education and other relevant public health and sanitation information; and participate in state-mandated food recalls. 
  • Conduct plan checks of new or remodel construction plans for restaurant, pool, and spa facilities relative to regulatory compliance; investigate complaints about sewage and various public health nuisances; conduct epidemiological investigations; handle housing and vector complaints; and investigate food borne illnesses. 
  • Conduct site evaluations of proposed developments, including soils testing, to determine site capability for sewage disposal; evaluate submitted designs and proposed septic systems relative to site conditions; evaluate feasibility of proposed subdivisions and set conditions for approval; and recommend approval or denial of variances and appeals.
  • Evaluate existing sewage disposal and water treatment installations and facilities for regulatory compliance; evaluate need for expansion or replacement of treatment systems; evaluate well sites and well construction for code compliance and acceptance as domestic water supply; and test and assess public drinking water potability. 
  • Conduct compliance inspections of public drinking water systems and evaluate laboratory testing data related to state and federal safe drinking water standards.
  • Evaluate solid waste handling and disposal facilities; review and recommend approval of or note exceptions to engineering reports regarding construction, operation, monitoring and closure/post closure maintenance and use; and respond to complaints and inquiries from the public regarding solid waste handling and disposal. 
  • Participate in environmental review process of assigned projects; identify and evaluate concerns regarding discretionary entitlement applications; process environmental assessment questionnaires and environmental impact reports; provide information regarding public health and sanitation issues involved in projects to proponents, the public and public hearing bodies. 
  • Conduct site assessments as part of environmental review process; develop recommendations for approval or denial; and assist staff in drafting environmental health findings and draft comments as opinion to the County Planning Division from the Environmental Health Division. 
  • Inspect and evaluate facilities that handle hazardous materials; review hazardous materials business plans for regulatory compliance; inspect above ground containers and underground storage tanks; and approve plans for and monitor underground storage tank removal and installation. 
  • Provide collection and information services for household hazardous waste; and evaluate facilities to generate and manage hazardous waste; respond to hazardous materials release/threatened release and provide technical assistance to emergency response team; and respond to complaints or requests for service from public regarding hazardous materials/waste storage, use, or disposal in business, institutional, or private residential settings. 
  • Conduct investigations and assessments and respond to complaints involving issues of environmental health and sanitation; work with all affected parties, in resolution of problems and issues; and coordinate with other County divisions and departments and other public agencies and jurisdictions to protect the public health. 
  • Provide information to the public regarding environmental health and sanitation issues and respond to questions and inquiries in the office, by telephone, in person at field sites, or through educational presentations; prepare staff and regulatory reports and correspondences; and establish and maintain appropriate and accurate files and records.
  • Build and maintain positive working relationships with co-workers, other County employees, and the public using principles of good customer service.
  • Perform related duties as assigned.


Work is performed in both an indoor office environment and in the field requiring travel to various locations throughout the County in a variety of outdoor weather conditions.


Experience and Training
It is the responsibility of applicants to identify in their application materials how they meet the minimum qualifications listed below.  A typical way to obtain the required knowledge and abilities would be:

Experience: No experience is required.

Training: Equivalent to a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university with major course work in any of the biological or physical sciences, environmental health science, engineering or a related field.

Required License or Certificate:

  • Possession of a letter of approval issued by the State of California Department of Public Health verifying eligibility for training.
  • May need to possess a valid driver’s license as required by the position.  Proof of adequate vehicle insurance and medical clearance may also be required.


Knowledge of:

  • Physical and biological sciences, including biology, chemistry, physics, geology, hydrology, and soils science.
  • Principles and practices of scientific research and statistical methodology.
  • Computer software, including word processing, spreadsheet, data base, and various statistical analysis applications.
  • Modern office procedures, methods, and computer equipment.
  • Principles and practices of work safety.
  • English usage, spelling, punctuation, and grammar.

Ability to:

  • Learn to perform the duties of an Environmental Health Specialist.
  • Intermittently observe, identify, and analyze public health and sanitation problems and learn to develop solutions; analyze work papers, reports, and special projects; identify and interpret technical and numerical information; learn to interpret, enforce, and explain statutes, regulations, policies and procedures; and maintain awareness of safety at all times.
  • On a continuous basis, sit at desk or in vehicle for long periods of time; intermittently walk, stand, kneel, climb, bend, stoop, squat, crouch, twist, balance, crawl, feel, and reach while conducting field inspections and investigations, or making various tests; see to observe field conditions; differentiate colors on charts, maps, or identification shields, in soil or food, or as part of testing; hear to evaluate proper functioning of various kinds of equipment; use a telephone; write or use a keyboard to communicate; perform simple and power grasping, pushing, pulling, and fine manipulation; and lift moderate weight.
  • Learn to compile, analyze, and evaluate technical information and prepare recommendations regarding further action.
  • Perform mathematical computations and statistical analysis.
  • Learn to interpret plans, drawings, and specifications.
  • Learn to use various test sampling, monitoring, measuring, and laboratory supplies and equipment and specialized protective gear as needed.
  • Learn to obtain information through interview and work firmly and courteously with the public.
  • Act quickly and calmly in emergency situations.
  • Analyze situations quickly and objectively and to determine proper course of action.
  • Work unusual and prolonged work schedules in the event of an environmental or public health emergency.
  • Use a computer, calculator, telephone, two-way radio, camera, dictation machine, facsimile machine, postage meter and photocopy machine.
  • Communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing.
  • Work with various cultural and ethnic groups in a tactful and effective manner.
  • Establish and maintain effective working relationships with those contacted in the course of work.


Training & Experience Rating (100%)

Based upon responses to the supplemental questionnaire, the applicant’s education, training, and experience will be evaluated using a pre-determined formula. Scores from this evaluation will determine applicant ranking and placement on the eligible list.


Length of Probation:

  • All permanent appointments from open eligible lists to open positions in the classified service shall serve a probationary period of twelve (12) months or two thousand eighty (2,080) hours, whichever is more.

Bargaining Unit:

  • General


Prior to the date of hire, applicants must undergo a fingerprint test by the Department of Justice, pass a medical examination (which may include a drug screening and possibly a psychological evaluation), sign a constitutional oath, and submit proof of U.S. citizenship or legal right to remain and work in the U.S.  For some positions, applicants may also be required to submit proof of age, undergo a background investigation (which may include a voice stress analysis and/or a polygraph), and/or be bonded. Additionally, positions in law enforcement classifications and those supporting law enforcement functions will be required to complete a conviction history questionnaire prior to or during the interview process. Applicants for positions with access to Medi-Cal billing software or who are licensed providers must clear the Federal Exclusion List, credentialing, and social security verification. Failure to clear these requirements may result in an employment offer being withdrawn.


Placer County offers an expedited process for qualifying certain applicants for interviews. Candidates currently employed, or employed within the last year, by a public agency operating under a personnel civil service or merit system may be eligible to be placed on a Public Agency Eligible List and certified as eligible for appointment to a similar job assignment without going through the examination process. For more information on the Public Agency Eligible List, to download forms, or to apply, please click here.


Thank you for your interest in employment with Placer County. Placer County is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to an active nondiscrimination program. It is the stated policy of Placer County that harassment, discrimination, and retaliation are prohibited and that all employees, applicants, agents, contractors, and interns/volunteers shall receive equal consideration and treatment. All terms and conditions of employment, including but not limited to recruitment, hiring, transfer, and promotion will be based on the qualifications of the individual for the positions being filled regardless of gender (including gender identity and expression), sexual orientation, race (including traits historically associated with race, including, but not limited to, hair texture and protective hairstyles such as braids, locks, and twists), color, ancestry, religion (including creed and belief), national origin, citizenship, physical disability (including HIV and AIDS), mental disability, medical condition (including cancer or genetic characteristics/information), age (40 or over),  marital status, military and/or veteran status, sex (including parental status, pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, and related medical conditions), political orientation, or any other classification protected by federal, state, or local law. Please contact the Human Resources Department at least 5 working days before a scheduled examination if you require accommodation in the examination process. Medical disability verification may be required prior to accommodation.

Click on a link below to apply for this position:

Fill out the Supplemental Questionnaire and Application NOW using the Internet.
View and print the Supplemental Questionnaire. This recruitment requires completion of a supplemental questionnaire. You may view and print the supplemental questionnaire here.

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