Environmental Health Specialist

Yakima County Health District   Yakima, WA   Full-time     Other
Posted on November 18, 2021

Yakima Health District
Seeks Environmental Health Specialist
Salary: $25.50 – $33.27 per hour** (10 Salary Steps) + Benefits

This is a regular non-exempt full-time position that generally works a Monday-Friday
work schedule, an occasional evening, and some weekends.
The Yakima Heath District offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes
medical, dental, and life insurance (Public Employee Benefits Board); participation in
Washington State retirement system (DRS); and a generous annual, holiday, and sick
leave package.
**The first ten salary steps are determined based on the employee’s experience,
language skills, and length of time with the Yakima Health District. With completion of
the 10th salary step, the employee may be eligible for salary increases if the employee
achieves a set of performance goals in accordance with the Pay-For-Performance

Purpose of the Position:
Environmental Health Specialist use natural sciences to inspect, monitor, assess, and
educate business owners, contractors, and the public about a variety of public health
regulations in place to protect the health of humans and the environment.
This position investigates foodborne, waterborne and vector-borne illnesses; reviews
and approves plans for solid waste facilities; schools, food service establishments,
drinking and recreational water sources, solid waste and onsite sewage systems; and
identifies risks of hazardous materials to the environment and humans.
This position reports to the Environmental Health Director, has been determined to be a
non-exempt employee in accordance with FLSA regulations, and is a member of
Professional and Technical Employees Local 17 union.

Essential Job Functions:
• Conduct inspections of food establishments to determine if the production and
preparation of food and beverages are safe for human consumption;
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• Survey public water systems, inspect wells, evaluate septic systems, and assure
drinking water is safe for human consumption and domestic use;
• Evaluate, inspect, and review plans for recreational water programs, swimming
pools, and spa facilities;
• Develop plans and evaluate the feasibility of small water systems, conduct onsite septic inspections;
• Conduct solid waste sites inspections, advise business and home owners of the
“best practices” of managing solid waste, when appropriate issue SEPA findings,
and review permits and engineering plans; Conduct inspections of camps and
schools to verify appropriate measures are taken to ensure the health and safety
of the public using these facilities;
• Respond to complaints and investigate disease causing sources re: food-borne,
water-borne and vector-borne diseases;
• Work with a wide-range of community partners, professional colleagues, and
coworkers as part of the environmental health team for the common good of
promoting good health practices to protect the public health and environment of
Yakima County
• Effectively manage competing demands of a large individual caseload,
increasing needs for improved customer service, working in a fast paced and
ever-changing work environment, and working directly with the public;
• Enter client information into an integrated permit management system, and be
competent in using Microsoft Excel, Word, Outlook, and GPS;
• Prepare professional correspondence, prepare complex and scientific reports,
collect and analyze data necessary for official documents, and design
informational and educational materials specific to environmental health;
• Prepare and present information in a clear and concise manner while conveying
scientific and complex information in a manner understood by the public;
• Regular and reliable attendance Monday through Friday is essential to managing
a demanding workload, and essential when the agency is required to respond to
a public health emergency which may include additional duties and different
working hours.
The itemized list of job tasks and essential functions as identified above may not be all
inclusive. Job duties may change during peak work periods such as major outbreaks of
diseases, major illness, or staff shortages.
Ability to:
• Understand and interpret scientific terms and guiding principles, public health
programs, laws, and regulations;
• Must be confident in using computer Microsoft software, fax and copy machines,
mobile and office phones, and be able to use hands and wrist repetitively;
• Must be able to read a map and/or use GIS systems to navigate roads,
highways, and regions of Yakima County;
• Prepare and produce clear and concise reports, records, and investigative case
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notes: maintain all records and file in accordance with medical and public
• Establish and maintain effective, courteous and respectful relationships with
internal and external colleagues, partners, clients, and the general public, and on
occasion manage a situation involving difficult or disruptive customers;
• Ability to work with and provide service to a very diverse community.

Required Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:
• Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Health, Biology, Chemistry, or other related
Physical Science (applicant must submit a college issued transcript with their
resume and cover letter);
• Experience in a prior Environmental Health position is desired but not required,
recent college graduates are encouraged to apply;
• Ability to acquire Registered Sanitarian or Registered Environmental Health
Specialist certification within two (2) years of the date of hire; review
requirements at: http://wsbrs.org/getreg.html
• Possess the ability to understand and convey to others very complex and
scientific terms, regulations, guidelines, and processes;
• All required licenses and certifications must be maintained in active status
without suspension or revocation throughout employment;
• Ability to speak, read and write English.
Necessary Special Requirements:
• Work in a wide range of environments including remote and rural areas, in
confined spaces, and maneuver rough terrains;
• Must be able to obtain a valid Washington State driver’s license within 30 days of
employment and possess auto insurance, or to be able to demonstrate the ability
to travel throughout the county daily in all weather conditions using personal
• Must be able to present complex regulations and guidelines in writing and
verbally in a clear and concise manner to a diverse population, some with limited
English skills;
• Must be able to work outdoors during extended periods of extreme weather
including snow, and extreme cold and hot weather; and
• The successful candidate will be required to complete a thorough background
investigation including review of the individual’s criminal history, to pass a preemployment physical exam, and to perform the essential functions of the job with
or without an accommodation.
Preferred Knowledge and Abilities
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• Use the principles, practices, techniques, and the “best practices” of
environmental sciences, environmental health, and good health;
• Work with confidential information, adhere to HIPAA regulations when applicable,
and ensure compliance with public records processes;
• Ability to collaborate with team members in a stressful environment, respond to
and manage complex and time-sensitive issues, work in a patient centric
environment, and maintain a professional relationship with a wide range of
community partners, colleagues, public health professionals;
• Ability to speak, read and understand Spanish is helpful;
Working Conditions/Physical Conditions:
• The time spent in the field and in the office, varies based on the demand for
• Must be able to walk on uneven and difficult surfaces, traverse a variety of
surfaces including steep terrain, climb stairs and ladders, and maneuver through
heavy vegetation and wooded areas;
• The nature of this work on occasion requires this employee to be exposed to
toxic or hazardous gasses, chemicals, bio-substances, and in these instances,
wear protective clothing and decontaminate accordingly;
• Must be able to lift, push, or pull field equipment weighing between 20-40
• Must prove or obtain immunity to measles, mumps, rubella and varicella
diseases within thirty days of employment;
• Must be current with pertussis immunization within thirty (30) days of

Resume, cover letter, and official college transcript must be submitted by 11:59pm on
December 5, 2021, to HealthDistrictHR@co.yakima.wa.us or mailed to 1210 Ahtanum
Ridge Drive Union Gap, WA 98903. The resume and cover letter should include
information about relevant work experience, skills and abilities applicable to the job.
To learn more about the position
To review the entire job description and learn more about the Yakima Health District
The Yakima Health District is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer that
embraces diversity.
The Yakima Health District is a drug and tobacco free workplace.