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State of Washington Classified Job Specification


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Class Code: 514H
Category: Science & Engineering


In the Department of Ecology, and designated in writing by a program manager equivalent or higher, serves as a senior hydrogeologist planning, developing, conducting, directing and/or overseeing independent hydrogeologic projects or investigations within a region or at headquarters and meets four (4) of the distinguishing characteristics for the class.   

Distinguishing Characteristics

Has lead responsibility within a program for the development of statutes, new regulations, policy, or technical guidelines relating to hydrogeologic issues. 

Provides direction to two or more agency professional staff. 

Manages projects which have been delegated in writing by a Program Manager, equivalent, or higher. 

Develops, prepares, presents expert testimony as designated in writing by and described on a Classification Questionnaire approved by a Program Manager. 

Reports status and/or results of hydrologic issues and analyses to a Program Manager, Regional Director, equivalent, or higher. 

Performs technical peer review of hydrogeologic activities/reports for cross-program/agency group and/or cross-section as designated in writing by and described on a Classification Questionnaire approved by a Program Manager. 

Serves as a technical expert for a program in a hydrogeologic specialty as designated in writing by and described on a Classification Questionnaire approved by a Program Manager.

Typical Work

Develops policies and procedures and technically directs staff within a unit providing technical hydrogeologic services to a section or program; 

Establishes, reviews, and evaluates water resource and water quality data collection and analysis;  

Directs and/or manages major field and office studies and technical evaluations in applied hydrogeology; 

Directs preparation and review of formal responses to inquiries from other governmental units and private interests; 

Directs preparation of testimony and/or testifies for court cases or administra­tive hearings; 

Plans, coordinates, and directs special projects; utilizes and coordinates support functions within the agency and in cooperation with other appropriate outside agencies; and directs preparation and publication of technical reports; 

Coordinates program activities with other programs of the agency, and other agencies or private interests involved in a particular project; 

Chairs public information meetings and/or hearings to provide public review and response to section or project activities, contracts outside the agency for additional expertise, equipment or capabilities required on specific projects; plans and directs task force activities and special multidisciplinary efforts organized to address a particular hydrogeologic problem; 

Provides professional implementation and enforcement of state laws and regula­tions; 

Performs other work as required. 

Knowledge and Abilities

Knowledge of:  physical and natural sciences related to ground/surface water quality, quantity, development, and basin-wide management; principles and practices of hydrogeology, hydrology, geology, well hydraulics, soils, geochemistry, meteorology, and related earth science and engineering subjects; waste disposal practices; computer sciences; well construction; field surveying techniques, instruments, and mapping; Water Code, Ground Water Quality Stan­dards, Dangerous Waste Regulations, and related departmental regulations; tech­niques and procedures for water sampling and monitoring; principles and proce­dures of cost estimating, budgeting, and public finance; principles and practic­es of workload management, program administration, human relations  and person­nel development programs.   

Ability to:  plan, organize, conduct, and direct hydrogeologic/surface water investigations, field work, and special studies of water quality, water quantity, hazardous waste, and water right problems; draft and administer departmental contracts; apply state-of-the-art theories and practices of hydrogeology; prepare and publish technical reports and bulletins; provide peer review of hydrogeologic activities and reports; interpret and apply the Water Code, Ground Water Quality Standards, related State and Federal laws, and related departmental regulations; evaluate and report on proposed water resources management legislation; negotiate with supervisory personnel of the agency and represent the program in departmental matters as directed; issue clear, concise, and tactful written and oral communications.

Legal Requirement(s)

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. 

Desirable Qualifications

A Bachelor’s degree involving major study in hydrogeology, hydrology, geology, or closely allied field.  


Five years of professional experience as a hydrogeologist, hydrologist, geologist, or closely allied profession at the Hydrogeologist 2 level, higher or equivalent. 

A Master’s degree with major study in hydrogeology, hydrology, geology, or closely allied field will substitute for two years of experience. 

A Ph.D. degree will substitute for three years of experience if major research was in hydrogeology, hydrology, geology, or closely allied field. 

Note:  Some positions require possession of a valid Washington State Geologist license. Some positions may additionally require possession of a Washington State Engineering Geologist specialty license and/or a Washington State Hydrogeologist specialty license.

Class Specification History

New class: 11-15-85
Revised minimum qualifications: 3-14-89
Revised definition, minimum qualifications and add distinguishing characteristics: 5-15-92
Revised minimum qualification to reflect licensure requirements: 11-15-02
New class code, formerly 63610, effective July 1, 2007.