The Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources (BWSR) is seeking independent, self-motivated natural resource professionals to be regional representatives for administration of the State’s premier wetland protection program, the Minnesota Wetland Conservation Act (WCA). The wetland protection provisions of the WCA are implemented by local government units or LGUs (Counties, Cities, Watershed Districts, Watershed Management Organizations and some Townships) with program oversight, assistance and guidance provided by BWSR as the responsible State Agency.
The regulatory provisions of the WCA are intended to maintain and improve the quantity and quality of the state’s wetlands through first avoiding and minimizing wetland impacts and then replacing them due to unavoidable impacts. Most WCA regulatory decisions are made by LGUs with technical findings and recommendations provided by local Technical Evaluation Panels (TEPs) of which BWSR is a member. BWSR assigns regional Wetland Specialists (approximately 8 to 10 across the state) to serve on TEPs for project reviews, provide advice to LGUs on WCA implementation, oversee and evaluate LGU functioning and performance, interpret wetland regulations, give expert advice on wetland delineation, coordinate with other agencies regulating wetlands (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, etc.) and provide technical and administrative training and mentoring on wetland science and policy to LGU staff. Wetland specialists regularly deal with issues related to wetland delineation, wetland restoration and banking, practical application of regulatory rules/policies and wetland impacts due to land use activities such as residential/commercial development, agricultural production, mining, drainage maintenance, etc.
Wetland Specialists are given a high degree of independence and flexibility to provide assistance, oversight and training/mentoring for local staff in their assigned work area. The positions involve frequent travel in the assigned work area to attend meetings at local government offices and field reviews at project sites with occasional overnight stays (in the range of 1 to 2 nights per month). Wetland specialists are expected to build strong professional relationships with LGU and other agency staff to facilitate consistent and efficient WCA implementation. Wetland specialists must manage their schedule to service multiple LGUs and provide clear and concise written comments and recommendations to LGUs, other agency staff landowners, consultants and project proponents within practical and statutory deadlines. Additionally, wetland specialists are expected to actively participate on intra and inter agency teams and work groups to assist in the development of programmatic guidance/policies/rules, solve technical and policy-related problems and address broader coordination issues. The position may from time to time involve day or evening attendance at local public meetings (County Board, City Council, etc.) to represent BWSR and convey the agency’s position or recommendation on a particular issue or project.
These positions report to the WCA Operations Coordinator who supervises all of the wetland specialist positions statewide. There is considerable interaction with other wetland specialists, the Wetland Banking Coordinator and his/her staff, technical services staff and the Wetland Section Manager. Wetland specialists are expected to keep their supervisor informed of general work area activities through e-mail, phone calls, in-person meetings and maintenance of a shared calendar. Coordination with other wetland specialists and wetland program coordinators is essential to facilitate statewide consistency and draw on the expertise and experience of others to address issues and solve problems.
E-mail email@example.com for a more detailed position description or go to http://www.bwsr.state.mn.us/careers/ .
Work Environment and Benefits
Wetland specialists are afforded considerable flexibility in scheduling their work week to accommodate various meetings, field reviews and comment period deadlines in their work area. They are expected to manage their 80 hours of work within a two-week time period in accordance with the appropriate bargaining unit of the State’s contract with the Minnesota Association of Public Employees. Potential work flexibility options that may be considered (as negotiated with supervisor) include flexible regular work hours and teleworking. BWSR promotes a healthy work/family balance environment.
Employees receive paid vacation, sick leave and holidays totaling at least 38 days off per year. Medical premiums are $31/month for an individual or $210/month for a family with low out-of-pocket maximum deductibles depending on the plan selected. Other benefits include dental, life, and disability insurance as well as pre-tax accounts, a health care savings account and state retirement plan. See https://mn.gov/mmb/assets/2016-benefits-overview_tcm1059-125364.pdf.
Consideration given only to those who meet the following Minimum Qualifications:
Two years’ work experience in conservation, natural resources or related field, And Bachelor’s Degree or higher.
One year of work experience in conservation, natural resources or related field, And Master’s Degree or higher.
Five years’ work experience in conservation, natural resources or related field, And at least an Associate’s Degree.
Types of qualifying experience include: 1) working for a state agency, federal agency, soil and water conservation district, watershed district, county environmental services or similar organization with environmental regulatory authority; and/or 2) working as a professional consultant involved in environmental regulation compliance.
Applicants must have a basic understanding of wetland science and ecology and associated technical fields of study (soils, hydrology and vegetation).
One or more years of experience working directly with the Minnesota Wetland Conservation Act in one or more of the following capacities: professional private consulting on WCA compliance; administering WCA as a local government unit representative; serving on WCA technical evaluation panels; working for other government entities on related regulatory programs that interact or overlap with WCA.
Wetland delineation competency such as: 1) A Certified Wetland Delineator per the University of Minnesota Wetland Delineation Certification Program or comparable certification program or 2) Completion of a field-based training course in wetland delineation.
How to Apply
Applicants must apply through the State of Minnesota Careers website. Go to http://www.mn.gov/careers , click on “Search for Jobs”, then click on “External Applicants”, then under “Keywords” type in “14694” and hit the search button.
Must apply by July 24, 2017.
You may contact Ken Powell, Wetland Conservation Act Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions about the positions.