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Yakima Basin Integrated Plan (YBIP) Project Manager (Environmental Planner 4)

Per Governor Inslee’s Proclamation 21-14.2 (Download PDF reader), Washington State employees must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. As a condition of employment, the successful candidate will be required to provide proof of their COVID-19 vaccination as part of the hiring process, prior to their start date. Requests for medical and religious exemptions will be considered. If you have questions, please contact with “COVID-19 vaccination” in the subject line.  

Keeping Washington Clean and Evergreen

The Office of Columbia River (OCR) within the Department of Ecology is looking to fill a Yakima Basin Integrated Plan (YBIP) Project Manager (Environmental Planner 4) position. This position is located in our Central Region Office (CRO) in Union Gap, WA. Upon hire, you must live within a commutable distance from the duty station.

The Office of Columbia River (OCR) is a small, innovative and fast-paced water supply development program within the Department of Ecology. In this position, you will serve as a senior environmental planner within OCR and provide planning support for major Yakima Basin Integrated Plan (YBIP) projects, and on occasion, Columbia River Basin projects as well.

You will serve as an OCR project manager and contribute to a highly skilled, technically focused project team in addition to administering and overseeing grants, contracts, work orders, and Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) authorized under RCW 90.38 (Yakima River Basin Integrated Water Resource Management Plan) and RCW 90.90 (Columbia River Basin Water Management Act). Other activities include meeting and/or coordinating with other local, state, federal and tribal entities and interested stakeholders; representing the Department of Ecology on multi-agency and/or multi-disciplinary work teams involved with implementing various elements of the YBIP. 

Agency Mission: Ecology's mission is to protect, preserve and enhance Washington's environment and to promote the wise management of our air, land and water for the benefit of current and future generations.  

Program Mission: The mission of the Office of Columbia River (OCR) is to aggressively pursue the development of new water supplies for the Columbia River and its tributaries to benefit both instream and out-of-stream uses. Although we partner with many agencies and programs, our mission sets us apart with respect to seeking out and finding water supply solutions by using all of the available tools. We use innovative conservation technology, habitat enhancement tools, and water supply forecasting to improve water supplies for families, farms and fish in eastern Washington.

During Healthy Washington Roadmap to Recovery, employees are working a combination of in-office and/or telework based on position and business need. This position is expected to work in the office up to three days per week. Ecology is following current state guidance regarding mask requirements, health screening questions before entry, and social distancing. Looking ahead, Ecology has recently updated the agency policies on telework and flexible and compressed work schedules.

Application Timeline: This position will remain open until filled, with an initial screening date of October 14, 2022. In order to be considered for initial screening, please submit an application on or before October 13, 2022. The agency reserves the right to make an appointment any time after the initial screening date.

About the Department of Ecology
Protecting Washington State's environment for current and future generations is what we do every day at Ecology. We are a culture that is invested in making a difference. Join a team that is highly effective and collaborative, with leadership that embraces the value of people.

Ecology cares deeply about employee wellness; we go beyond traditional benefits, proudly offering:

  • A healthy life/work balance by offering flexible schedules and telework options for most positions.
  • An Infants at Work Program that is based on the long-term health values of infant-parent bonding and breastfeeding newborns.
  • Continuous growth and development opportunities. 
  • A wellness program that offers education, fitness classes, and an agency-wide fondness for outdoor meetings.
  • Opportunities to serve your community and make an impact through meaningful work.

Our commitment to DEIR
Diversity, equity, inclusion, and respect (DEIR) are core values central to Ecology’s work. We strive to be a workplace where we are esteemed for sharing our authentic identities, while advancing our individual professional goals and collaborating to protect, preserve, and enhance the environment for current and future generations.
Diversity: We celebrate and appreciate diversity; our unique perspectives and abilities enrich us all and lead to innovative approaches and solutions.
Equity: We champion equity, recognizing that each of us need different things to thrive.
Inclusion: We intentionally create and hold space so that we all have meaningful opportunities to participate and contribute to Ecology’s work.
Respect: We treat each other with respect and dignity, acknowledging the inherent worth of our diverse perspectives and lived experiences, even in times of uncertainty and disagreement.
We believe that DEIR is both a goal and an action. We are on a journey, honoring our shared humanity and taking steps to demonstrate our commitment to a vision where each of us is heard, seen, and valued. 

What makes this role unique?
As the Office of Columbia River (OCR) professional senior environmental planner, you will be responsible for managing grants, contracts, interagency agreements and other various funding agreements authorized within the applicable State Capital Budget appropriations to implement a variety of water supply, conservation and habitat improvement projects that achieve the goals of the Yakima Basin Integrated Plan (YBIP). This includes new project development and planning review as part of a variety of YBIP technical subcommittees, contract management, site visits, funding proposals, environmental review and permit coordination.  
In this position, you will advise OCR management on emerging policy, technical and sensitive issues that are barriers to program implementation and propose new scientific or technological approaches and strategic policy development to overcome those barriers. 

What you will do: 

  • Perform independent, professional review of feasibility reports, technical reports, construction documents, water supply data, and water availability information. 
  • Provide policy and planning support on major project developments, such as water storage projects, water conservation projects and habitat improvement projects. 
  • Provide planning expertise and assist in the development of environmental planning documents to achieve OCR’s mission. 
  • Coordinate new project development in OCR, including early planning and permitting requirements in coordination with other programs regarding state water law and policies, Clean Water Act implementation and 401 certifications and permitting. 
  • Review project technical information and status reports for OCR funded agreements and make recommendations on project viability. 
  • Assist the OCR Director, Financial and Projects Section Manager and OCR Operations Manager in coordinating with Water Resources on environmental review (SEPA) documents and statewide OCR policy issues, including with Regional Section Managers at our Central, Eastern, and Southwest Region Offices, and the Program Leadership Team.
  • Represent OCR on interagency/interdisciplinary teams involved with YBIP implementation. 
  • Serve on a variety of YBIP subcommittees. 


Required Qualifications:
Experience for both required and desired qualifications can be gained through various combinations of formal professional employment, educational and volunteer experience. See below for how you may qualify.
Option 1: 

A Bachelor's degree with major emphasis in land use, urban, regional, environmental, or natural resource planning, landscape architecture, geography, land use or environmental law, public administration with an environmental emphasis, or closely related field 


Five (5) years of professional experience in land use, urban, regional, environmental, or natural resource planning, and/or program development.

Option 2: 

A Master's degree or above with major emphasis in land use, urban, regional, environmental, or natural resource planning, landscape architecture, geography, land use or environmental law, public administration with an environmental emphasis, or closely related field 


Three (3) years of professional experience in land use, urban, regional, environmental, or natural resource planning, and/or program development.

Option 3:

One year of experience as an Environmental Planner 3, at the Department of Ecology.

Special Requirements/Conditions of Employment: 
  • Must possess and maintain a valid driver’s license.

Desired Qualifications:
We highly encourage you to apply even if you do not have some (or all) of the desired experience below.

  • Completed course work or experience in environmental planning, natural science, or water resources. 
  • Ability to work independently on large projects and stay focused on tasks for long periods of time. 
  • Ability to produce high quality and accurate work products in a timely manner. 
  • Experience with applications such as Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint and Word. 

Note: Having some (or all) of this desired experience may make your application more competitive in a highly competitive applicant pool.

Supplemental Information

Ecology seeks diverse applicants: We view diversity, equity, inclusion, and respect through a broad lens including race, ethnicity, class, age, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, immigration status, military background, language, education, life experience, physical disability, neurodiversity, and intersectional identities. Qualified candidates from all backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Need an Accommodation in the application and/or screening process or this job announcement in an alternative format?

  • Please call: (360) 407-6186 or email: and we will be happy to assist.
  • If you are deaf or hard of hearing you can reach the Washington Relay Service by dialing 7-1-1 or 1-800-833-6388.
  • If you need assistance applying for this job, please e-mail Please do not send an email to this address to follow-up on the status of your application. You can view the latest status of your application on your profile's main page.
  • If you are reading this announcement in print format, please enter the following URL to your search engine to apply: 
Application Instructions:

It's in the applicant's best interest to submit all of the documents listed below. Applications without these documents may be declined.

  • A cover letter describing why you are interested in this position.
  • A resume outlining your experience and education (if applicable) as it relates to the minimum qualifications of this position.
  • Three professional references.

Please do NOT include your salary history. Wage/salary depends on qualifications or rules of promotion, if applicable. 
For Your Privacy:
When attaching documents to your application (such as Resume, Cover Letter, Transcripts, DD-214, etc.):

  • Please be sure to remove private information such as your social security number, date of birth, etc. 
  • Do not attach documents that are password-protected, as these documents may not be reviewed and may cause errors within your application when downloaded. 

Additional Application Instructions for Current Ecology Employees:
Please make sure to answer the agency-wide questions regarding permanent status as a classified employee within the Washington General Service or Washington Management Service. Do not forget to select Department of Ecology as a response to question 2, and type your personnel ID number for question 3. If you are not sure of your status or do not know your personnel ID number, please contact Human Resources.

Application Attestation: 

The act of submitting application materials electronically is considered affirmation that the information is complete and truthful. The state may verify this information and any untruthful or misleading answers are cause for rejection of your application or dismissal if employed. 

Other Information:
If you have specific questions about the position, please email Melissa Downes at Please do not contact Melissa to inquire about the status of your application. 
To request the full position description: email

Why work for Ecology?

As an agency, our mission is to protect, preserve and enhance Washington's environment for current and future generations. We invest in our employees to create and sustain a working environment that encourages creative leadership, effective resource management, teamwork, professionalism, and accountability.

Joining Ecology means becoming a part of a team committed to protecting and restoring Washington State's environment. A career in public service allows you to help solve some of the most challenging problems facing our state, while keeping your health and financial security a priority. We combine one of the most competitive benefits packages in the nation with a strong commitment to life/work balance.

Ecology employees may be eligible for the following:

Student debt: how working for Ecology can help
The Department of Ecology is a qualifying employer for the Public Service Forgiveness Program (PSLF). See for more details.
To learn more about The Department of Ecology, please visit our website at and follow, like or visit us on LinkedInTwitterFacebookInstagram or our blog.

Collective Bargaining: This is a position covered by a bargaining unit for which the Washington Federation of State Employees (WFSE) is the exclusive representative.  

Equal Opportunity Employer: The Washington State Department of Ecology is an equal opportunity employer. We strive to create a working environment that includes and respects cultural, racial, ethnic, sexual orientation and gender identity diversity. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, persons of disability, persons over 40 years of age, veterans, military spouses or people with military status, and people of all sexual orientations and gender identities are encouraged to apply. Persons needing accommodation in the application/testing process or this job announcement in an alternative format may call (360) 407-6186. Applicants who are deaf or hard of hearing may call the Washington Relay Service by dialing 7-1-1 or 1-800-833-6388.

Note: This recruitment may be used to fill other positions of the same job classification across the agency. Once all the position(s) from the recruitment announcement are filled, the recruitment may only be used to fill additional open positions for the next sixty (60) days.