City of Tampa

Environmental Scientist I (#520100) N29

$27.76-$41.52 Hourly / $4,811.73-$7,196.80 Monthly / $57,740.80-$86,361.60 Yearly


This is professional work involving biological and chemical research, testing and analysis of environmental samples and/or wastewater.

Nature Of Work

An employee in this class is responsible for performing scientific field and laboratory work in monitoring the aquatic environment adjacent to effluent discharge points. The employee is responsible for performing a variety of field and laboratory tests and analyses of natural water and municipal wastewater. Assignments are of average difficulty and require exercise of some initiative and independent judgement, as well as application of some scientific and technical knowledge. Field assignments may involve scuba diving for collection of biological and chemical samples or operating a municipal boat and related equipment. Under general supervision, employee receives instructions orally and in writing. Work is reviewed while in progress and upon completion through observation, conferences, reports submitted, and results obtained.

Examples of Duties

Performs chemical and microbiological laboratory tests and analyses of environmental samples and wastewater and recommends improvements in treatment; conducts statistical analysis and evaluation based on chemical and microbiological analysis findings.

Evaluates effects of chemical additives to raw sewage; analyzes wastewater samples for suspended solids, chemicals, chemical oxygen demand, total organic carbon, biochemical oxygen demand, nutrients and miscellaneous inorganic chemical parameters; participates in preparation of standard solutions and reagents; participates in conducting feasibility studies of new analytical methods.

Collects and processes laboratory, biological, and geological samples as required; performs technical analysis for specialized projects; utilizes Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) software to assist with lab analysis and related projects; performs quality control checks of lab analyses; maintains records and prepares reports on procedures and results of studies.

Researches various areas of wastewater treatment operations developing special techniques to improve or replace present methods of standard chemical analysis; investigates research techniques and develops improved analytical methods and techniques; assumes coordination of laboratory functions, where required.

Performs and participates in research and specialized biological and chemical studies including field trips to determine effects of wastewater effluent on water quality and biology in bays and surrounding areas; scuba dives to collect biological and chemical samples and/or operates and maintains municipal boat and related equipment utilized in such studies, where required.

Selects and applies standard research techniques and methods in conducting biological studies; researches species of animals, plants, insects, or marine life; monitors and collects samples of animal and plant life; participates in conducting specialized research projects; surveys biological literature and prepares reports; maintains experimental aquariums; performs quantitative and qualitative microscopic examinations of biological samples.

Identifies various biological species found in samples and quantifies; performs taxonomic identification and enumeration of phytoplankton samples from Tampa Bay.

Determines the cause of water pollutants using chemical and microbiological examinations.

Performs calibration, operation, downloading, and maintenance of multi-probe water quality instruments.

Ensures upkeep and proper use and care of vehicles, tools, and equipment assigned; operates a lightweight motor vehicle.

Provides technical advice, guidance, and assistance to others to avoid or solve problems; answers questions/speaks at public meetings to disseminate information; communicates regularly by phone or in person with various agencies and others to gather, exchange, give, and verify information.

Maintains records and prepares necessary reports for local, state and federal regulatory agencies to document enforcement of regulations.

Performs related work as required.

Knowledge, Skills & Abilities

Working knowledge of: methods, principles, practices, and terminology used in biological and chemical laboratory and field work; biological and chemical research, testing and analysis techniques, as well as current literature in the assigned area.

Some knowledge of: modern equipment and scientific instruments used in biological and chemical studies of water and wastewater conditions.

Ability to: apply scientific and technical knowledge accurately and with professional judgement in completion of laboratory tests and examinations; perform biological studies and laboratory tests; interpret, evaluate and maintain records of tests results; prepare and submit accurate and complete technical reports of laboratory findings both orally and in writing, and for presentation to the public, where required; scuba dive and operate and maintain a municipal boat and related equipment as required; perform minor adjustments and repairs to laboratory and field instruments and equipment; perform tasks requiring physical strength and endurance as required; establish and maintain effective working relationships with other employees, officials and the public; operate a lightweight motor vehicle.

Skill in: use of various laboratory and field instruments and equipment; use and care of scuba diving and boating equipment, where required.

Minimum Qualifications

Graduation from an accredited college or university with a bachelor’s degree in biology, chemistry, or a related field and six (6) months of experience in either field or laboratory work in aquatic biology, microbiological analysis or laboratory analysis; or an equivalent combination of training and experience.

Licenses or Certifications

Possession of a valid Florida driver’s license. Appropriate diver’s certification may be required.


Employees may be required to work rotating shifts, including nights, weekends, holidays and overtime as needed. During periods when the Mayor issues an emergency declaration for the City of Tampa, all employees may be required to work in preparation, response or recovery activities related to the stated emergency.

CLASS: 520100; EST: 8/12/2013;