Director of Public Works / City Engineer

City of Needles | Needles, CA

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Posted Date 3/07/2019

POSITION PURPOSE:  Under direction from the City Manager, plans, manages, oversees, and directs the operations and services of Public Works, which includes Engineering, Street, Building and, Fleet Maintenance. Implements policies and procedures related to program areas within the City; coordinates activities with other City officials, departments, outside agencies, organizations, and the public; provides responsible and complex staff support to the City Manager and other City personnel; performs other related duties as required.


PRINCIPAL RESPONSIBILITIES (may include but not limited to):

  • Exercises administrative responsibility for all Public Works and Engineering related activities and services, including the preparation of departmental budgets; monitors expenditures and makes recommendations on staffing and equipment.
  • Develops, implements and maintains Public Works/Engineering goals, objectives, priorities, policies, procedures, and work plan; works directly with City personnel in the development and interpretation of City and department policies; confers with engineers, legal advisors, citizens, and City officials. Solves human resource management problems; reviews and evaluates work methods and procedures for improving organizational performance, enhancing services, and meeting goals; identifies and resolves problems and/or issues; ensures that goals are achieved.
  • Oversees and consults in the design, preparation, and review of construction program plans, site investigations, cost estimates, specifications, and reports for the construction and/or improvement of public facilities.
  • Reviews operational procedures to ensure compliance with applicable policies and quality control standards as well as to ensure currency in technique; recommends and initiates changes to departmental procedures, policies and regulations including engineering design standards.
  • Plans directs, and organizes the work of Engineering staff in the areas of land development, capital projects, traffic and special projects such as water and wastewater systems and water quality management; coordinates, oversees, and manages both in-house and consultant generated design of capital projects including plans, specifications and estimates; supervises the development of and tracks capital projects schedules.
  • Reviews development plans to ensure they comply with professional engineering standards, City policies and City Ordinances.
  • Monitors the condition of the City’s infrastructure, including streets, sidewalks, curbs, gutters,  buildings, and other related facilities and equipment for maintenance, repair, and replacement and prepares capital improvement plans and maintenance plans and programs.
  • Provides assistance to the City Manager, City Council, various commissions and committees, and all City staff; serves as a technical resource; coordinates pertinent information, resources, and work teams necessary to support a positive and productive environment. Prepares correspondence and reports and makes recommendations to the City Manager.
  • Attends and participates in professional and community meetings; stays current on issues relative to the field of public works and engineering; responds to and resolves sensitive and complex community and organizational inquiries, issues, and complaints; establishes and maintains a customer service orientation within the department.


Education and/or Experience:

Any combination of education and experience that has provided the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary for a Director of Public Works/City Engineer.  A typical way of obtaining the required qualifications is to possess the equivalent of five (5) years of progressive responsible civil municipal public works administration and engineering, including at least three (3) years in a supervisory capacity, and a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering or a closely related field. 


Possession of a valid certificate of registration as a Civil Engineer issued by the California State Board of Registration for Civil and Professional Engineers. Possession of a valid driver’s license

Knowledge of:

Principles and practices of Public Works and Engineering management; principles of administration, organization, and operation; principles, practices, and techniques of civil engineering, including the planning, design, construction, contract management, and inspection of municipal public works projects; principles and practices of funding and budget development, administration, and evaluation; principles and practices of street maintenance, equipment maintenance, water distribution system maintenance, sewage collection systems maintenance, facilities maintenance, capital projects, and public utilities;  applicable federal, state and local laws, codes, and regulations; scheduling work assignments; standard office procedures, practices, and equipment; modern office practices, methods and equipment, including a computer and applicable software; methods and techniques for record keeping and report preparation and writing; proper English, spelling, and grammar; occupational hazards and standard safety practices.

Ability to:

Plan, direct, manage, and coordinate the work of the Public Works/Engineering Department; read and interpret maps, drawings, specifications, and technical manuals; develop and administer sound departmental goals, objectives, policies, and methods for evaluating achievement and performance levels; develop, present, and administer a program budget; plan, organize, evaluate, and direct work of assigned staff; perform mathematical calculations quickly and accurately; interpret, explain, and apply applicable laws, codes, and regulations; read, interpret, and record data accurately; organize, prioritize, and follow-up on work assignments; work independently and as part of a team; meet the public in situations requiring diplomacy and tact; dealing constructively with conflict and developing effective resolutions; make sound decisions within established guidelines; analyze a complex issue and develop and implement an appropriate response; follow written and oral directions; observe safety principles and work in a safe manner; communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing; establish and maintain effective working relationships.


This classification description is not intended to be all-inclusive, and employee will also perform other reasonable related duties as assigned by the City Manager as required.  The City reserves the right to revise or change classification duties and responsibilities as the need arises.  This description does not constitute a written or implied contract of employment.

Job Category
Local Government
Career Level

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