State of Washington Classified Job Specification
AGRICULTURAL CHEMICAL SPECIALIST
Designated specialist in writing by the Program Manager and Assistant Director performing complex, highly technical duties for one or more of the following areas: Compliance and enforcement; endangered species protection; farm-worker education; groundwater and/or surface water protection; technical assistance and other outreach activities; licensing and re-certification; program development; waste pesticide collection and disposal or pesticide, fertilizer and feed registration activities. May lead assigned staff.
Assists and/or may develop and revise laws, rules, policies and procedures;
As a technical specialist may: give testimony and provide technical support at committee meetings or public hearings; develop training materials and conduct in-service training for division personnel; act as a resource person for the agency, regulated community and the public; plan, develop and conduct special projects; write technical reports for development of division policy; develop educational materials and provide technical assistance to the regulated community; develop and implement outreach programs for the regulated community and the public; plan, facilitate and/or represent the division and/or agency in public meetings and/or workshops;
Conducts complex, highly technical or large-scale investigations and inspections to determine compliance with state and federal laws and rules; identifies problem areas and implements on-site corrective action as appropriate; performs follow-up inspections to ensure that corrective action has been implemented; and/or acts as an expert witness for the department at civil and administrative proceedings;
Revises pesticide licensing examinations; processes requests for accreditation of pesticide recertification courses; informs course sponsors of recertification requirements; monitors and evaluates pesticide recertification course content to determine if credit granted was appropriate; develops improved technical systems to process and make licensing and recertification information more accessible to the regulated public;
Screens, assesses and samples pesticides and unknown substances to determine eligibility for disposal in the waste pesticide collection program; packages waste pesticides for safe transportation to collection sites; schedules waste pesticide collections and coordinates activities of agency staff with the hazardous waste contractor; assists pesticide users in determining which products no longer have legal uses and which can still be used; participates in annual safety training;
Reviews and evaluates proposed pesticide, feed and fertilizer product registrations for compliance with state and federal requirements; reviews and evaluates requests for special local needs registrations of pesticides, pesticide emergency exemptions from registration, and pesticide experimental use permits; provides official interpretation of product labels for registrants, industry and other staff; works directly with the industry and Washington State University to coordinate minor crop and minor use planning and registrations;
May lead or supervise staff as assigned;
Performs other work as required.
Knowledge and Abilities
Knowledge of: pesticide use practices in agricultural and non-agricultural environments; hazards of pesticides on human, animals, plants and the environment; federal and state laws and rules relating to the production, distribution, use and disposal of pesticides, fertilizers and feeds; investigative and sampling techniques; Pesticide Management Division procedures and protocols relating to pesticides, fertilizers and feeds; safety procedures for the handling of pesticides, fertilizers and feeds; the more technical aspects of their specialty.
Ability to: use unbiased, independent judgment in making decisions and completing tasks; develop procedures for unusual complex problems; apply and enforce laws and rules consistently and impartially; understand and interpret written and oral directions; deal tactfully with hostile members of regulated industry, government officials and the general public; conduct effective oral presentations; consult and advise the regulate industry on appropriate laws and rules; work independently with a minimum of direction; work efficiently and accurately in a timely manner; seek out and participate in continuing education opportunities in designated specialty; lead and oversee the work of other staff members; travel frequently.
There may be instances where individual positions must have additional licenses or certification. It is the employer’s responsibility to ensure the appropriate licenses/certifications are obtained for each position.
A Bachelor’s degree which must include at least 25 semester or 40 quarter hours in a natural or physical science and three years of professional experience in a natural resource, environmental or health regulatory agency, in the pest management field, or in the feed or fertilizer industry.
A Master’s degree in a natural or physical science will substitute for one year of required experience.
A Ph.D. degree in a natural or physical science will substitute for two years of required experienced.
Class Specification History
New class: 10-15-82
Revised definition: 7-12-85
Revised definition and minimum qualifications, title change (formerly Agricultural Chemical Investigator 3): 9-18-89
Revised definition: 2-15-91
Revised definition and minimum qualifications: 7-1-96
Revised definition, minimum qualifications, salary adjustment, and title changed (formerly Agricultural Chemical Specialist 3): 9-19-03
New class code: (formerly 44820) effective July 1, 2007.