Butte CountyChico 95926

Performs a variety of duties in support of the County’s hazardous materials programs in conformance with its state mandates as a Certified Unified Program Agency to ensure consistent administrative requirements, permits, inspections and enforcement activities of designated environmental and emergency response programs; ensures all actions taken are compliant with statute, regulations, and best management practices for the hazardous materials industry.

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Hazardous Materials Specialist I/ii

Butte County
Butte County Public Health Department, 695 Oleander Ave, Chico, CA 95926, United States


Under general supervision (Hazardous Materials Specialist I) or direction (Hazardous Materials Specialist II), performs professional office and field work in support of the County’s hazardous materials programs consistent with state mandates as a Certified Unified Program Agency (CUPA); responds to complaints and/or emergencies and performs site analysis of hazardous materials incidents; verifies compliance with requirements, inspects facility’s for hazardous materials storage and hazardous waste disposal requirements throughout the County; and performs related duties as assigned. 


Receives general supervision (Hazardous Materials Specialist I) or direction (Hazardous Materials Specialist II) from assigned supervisory or management personnel.  Exercises no direct supervision over staff. 


Hazardous Materials Specialist I: This is the entry-level classification in the Hazardous Materials Specialist series.  Initially under close supervision, incumbents learn and perform routine duties related to the inspection, investigation, and enforcement of hazardous materials regulations. As experience is gained, assignments become more varied and complex; close supervision and frequent review of work lessen as an incumbent demonstrates skill to perform the work independently.  Positions at this level usually perform most of the duties required of the positions at the Hazardous Materials Specialist II level, but are not expected to function at the same skill level and usually exercise less independent discretion and judgment in matters related to work procedures and methods.   Work is usually supervised while in progress and fits an established structure or pattern.  Exceptions or changes in procedures are explained in detail as they arise.  

Hazardous Materials Specialist II: This is the journey-level classification in the Hazardous Materials Specialist series. Positions at this level are distinguished from the Hazardous Materials Specialist I level by performance of the full range of duties as assigned, working independently, and exercising judgment and initiative. Positions at this level receive only occasional instruction or assistance as new or unusual situations arise and are fully aware of the operating procedures and policies of the work unit.   

This class is distinguished from the Hazardous Materials Specialist III in that the latter is the advanced journey-level which performs the most complex and specialized inspection and enforcement duties, including program oversight.  

Positions in the Hazardous Materials Specialist class series are flexibly staffed; positions at the II-level may be filled by advancement from the I-level; progression to the II-level is dependent on (i) management affirmation that the position is performing the full range of duties assigned to the classification; (ii) satisfactory work performance; (iii) the incumbent meeting the minimum qualifications for the classification including any licenses and certifications; and (iv) management approval for progression to the II-level.

Essential Job Functions


Typical functions may include any of the following tasks, knowledge, abilities, and other characteristics.  The list that follows is not intended as a comprehensive list; it is intended to provide a representative summary of the major duties and responsibilities. Incumbent(s) may not be required to perform all duties listed, and may be required to perform additional, position-specific tasks.

Some duties, knowledge, skills, and abilities may be performed in a learning capacity for entry-level (I Level) positions. 

  • Performs a variety of duties in support of the County’s hazardous materials programs in conformance with its state mandates as a Certified Unified Program Agency to ensure consistent administrative requirements, permits, inspections and enforcement activities of designated environmental and emergency response programs; ensures all actions taken are compliant with statute, regulations, and best management practices for the hazardous materials industry.
  • Schedules and conducts inspections for assigned facilities to monitor compliance with hazardous materials laws and ordinances and identify potential public health hazards; prepares and submits inspection reports documenting violations and corrective actions.
  • Coordinates activities with other agencies, including law enforcement or oversight agencies; acts as a liaison between the division and federal, state and local agencies on hazardous materials matters.
  • Responds to emergency incidents involving the release of hazardous materials; advises other agencies on appropriate safety precautions and monitors clean-up activities.   
  • Oversees the mitigation of hazardous substance releases during emergency or disaster situations, under the authority of the County’s Health Officer.
  • Investigates reports of hazardous materials spills or dumps from the public and other agencies; identifies hazardous substances and determines the probable source; oversees the abatement and clean-up of sites contaminated by hazardous materials; reviews and oversees the work of clean up contractors and technical consultants.
  • Prepares correspondence and reports related to inspections, investigations, and hazardous materials management.
  • Assists in gathering and evaluating data related to hazardous materials storage, treatment, disposal, reduction, and incident response plans.
  • Reviews Hazardous Materials Business Plans, Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasure (SPCC) Plans, Risk Management Plans (RMP) and Underground Storage Tank (UST) construction plans of hazardous materials facilities; provides information and assistance to businesses, other agencies and the public on compliance requirements.
  • Issues citations and Notices of Violation for violating public health and environmental laws and regulations; recommends legal action; assists in preparing legal cases and testifies in court proceedings.
  • Coordinates and presents training for internal staff, the regulated community, public and external organizations; prepares and modifies informational materials; conducts community presentations and workshops.
  • Performs related duties as assigned.
Minimum Qualifications

Knowledge of:

  • Principles and practices of hazardous materials management. 
  • Properties of hazardous materials and safety practices for their handling and disposal.   
  • Principles of risk assessment and mitigation. 
  • CUPA’s burden of proof for civil criminal and administrative cases as it relates to evidence provided by the division. 
  • Principles and purpose of multiple compliance documents including, but not limited to, Hazardous Materials Business Plan, California Accidental Release Prevention Program, Underground Storage Tank (UST) Program, Aboveground Petroleum Storage Act (APSA), Hazardous Waste and Treatment and related documents. 
  • Applicable federal, state, and local laws, regulatory codes, ordinances, and procedures pertaining to hazardous materials management. 
  • Chemical, biological, physical and environmental science principles. 
  • Local, regional and national law enforcement or oversight agencies involved in hazardous materials. 
  • Multiple tiers of violations as it relates to enforcement. 
  • Principles and practices of hazardous materials incident response.   
  • Inspection and investigative techniques. 
  • Underground storage tank (UST) construction, removal, and operation. 
  • Operation, policies, and procedures of the Environmental Health Division.
  • Techniques for providing a high level of customer service by effectively dealing with the public, vendors, contractors, and County staff.
  • The structure and content of the English language, including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Modern equipment and communication tools used for business functions and program, project, and task coordination, including computers and software programs relevant to work performed.

Ability To:

  • Respond to a diverse range of hazardous materials requests for service and support. 
  • Perform site analysis at hazardous material incidents to identify materials and appropriate response.   
  • Utilize diagnostic tools and equipment to identify substances. 
  • Coordinate services with multiple agencies. 
  • Oversee the work of contractors and consultants involved in hazardous materials clean up and site mitigation. 
  • Develop, coordinate, implement and evaluate hazardous materials management plans. 
  • Understand, interpret, and analyze all pertinent laws, codes, regulations, policies and procedures, and standards relevant to enforcing applicable regulations and guidelines.   
  • Prepare clear and concise reports, correspondence, and other written material.  
  • Review specifications and plans for above ground and underground storage tank systems for regulatory compliance.  
  • Simultaneously conduct multiple inspections and investigations, and accurately document findings and maintain appropriate records.  
  • Evaluate potential consequences and need for action, based on field observations, professional recommendations and laboratory results.  
  • Obtain information through interviews and work firmly and courteously with the public.  
  • Perform mathematical computations and statistical analysis. 
  • Act quickly and calmly in emergency situations.   
  • Independently organize work, set priorities, meet critical deadlines, and follow-up on assignments. 
  • Use tact, initiative, prudence, and independent judgment within general policy, procedural, and legal guidelines.
  • Effectively use computer systems, software applications relevant to work performed and modern business equipment to perform a variety of work tasks.
  • Communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing, using appropriate English grammar and syntax.
  • Establish, maintain, and foster positive and effective working relationships with those contacted in the course of work.

Education and Experience:

Any combination of training and experience that would provide the required knowledge, skills, and abilities is qualifying. A typical way to obtain the required qualifications would be:

Equivalent to a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university with major coursework in biology or microbiology, chemistry, chemical engineering, physics, physical science, environmental science,   geology or soil science, environmental health, environmental or sanitary engineering, toxicology, industrial hygiene, hazardous materials management, fire science, fire technology and  

Hazardous Materials Specialist I: One (1) year of technical experience in hazardous materials program. 

Hazardous Materials Specialist II: Two (2) years of increasingly responsible professional hazardous materials program experience equivalent to the class of Hazardous Materials Specialist I with Butte County. 

Certifications and Licenses: 

  • Must possess a valid US driver’s license upon date of application. Must obtain California driver’s license following hire date per California DMV regulations.
  • Must possess or obtain valid 40-hour Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response Certification by the end of probationary period. 
  • Hazardous Materials Specialist II: obtain and maintain a valid International Code Council California Underground Storage Tank Inspector certification by the end of probationary period. 
  • Hazardous Materials Specialist II: obtain and maintain a valid Aboveground Petroleum Storage Act Inspector certification by the end of probationary period.  
Environmental Factors and Conditions/Physical Requirements


When assigned to an office environment: 

  • Mobility to work in a standard office setting and use standard office equipment, including a computer; to operate a motor vehicle and visit various County sites; primarily a sedentary office classification although standing in work areas and walking between work areas may be required; occasionally bend, stoop, kneel, reach, push and pull drawers open and closed to retrieve and file information; ability to lift, carry, push, and pull materials and objects up to 10 pounds. 
  • Vision to read printed materials and a computer screen. 
  • Hearing and speech to communicate in person and over the telephone. 
  • Finger dexterity is needed to access, enter and retrieve data using a computer keyboard or calculator and to operate standard office equipment.

When assigned to field inspections: 

  • Mobility to work in changing site conditions; to sit, stand and walk on level, uneven or slippery surfaces; to reach, twist, turn, kneel and bend, to climb and descend ladders and to operate a motor vehicle and visit various County sites.
  • Strength and stamina to perform light to medium physical work; lift, carry, push and pull materials and objects averaging a weight of 50, or heavier weights, in all cases with the use of proper equipment and/or assistance from other staff.
  • Vision to inspect site conditions and work in progress. 
  • Fieldwork requiring frequent walking in operational areas to identify problems or hazards, with exposure to hazardous materials in some site locations.