Microbiologist - Environmental Services/Public Works

City of Las Vegas | Las Vegas, NV

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Posted Date 10/21/2019


Salary: $28.48 Hourly

A civil service examination will be conducted in accordance with the Civil Service Rules of the city of Las Vegas. The supplemental questions are the examination. Falsification of information may result in disqualification from a recruitment or removal from a City position. Additional information will not be accepted after the closing date.The supplemental questions are weighted 100% for placement on an eligible list, and must be worked on individually by the applicant only. The supplemental questions of all qualified applicants will be reviewed for placement on an eligible list.

 You must score 70% or higher on the examination to be placed on the eligible list.

SELECTION PROCESS: Final candidate selection will include list placement and may include hiring interview, a short written test and a practical Lab exercise. Any individual offered employment will be required to pass a pre-employment drug test, complete background check, and may be required to demonstrate the ability to perform the physical requirements of the job." Some positions may require preliminary background checks.

Supervises and performs biomonitoring tests, microbiological analysis and microscopic examinations necessary for wastewater treatment plant process control and determining compliance with federal and state requirements, water quality standards and other regulations and concerns; performs routine chemical analyses of treatment plant samples to ensure permit compliance and monitor treatment plant performance; and performs a variety of technical tasks relative to assigned area of responsibility.

Supervision Received and Exercised

Receives direction from the Environmental Laboratory and Compliance Manager or higher level management.

May act as a lead worker, exercising functional and technical supervision including scheduling and assigning tasks, providing guidance, ensuring work is completed according to proper procedure, monitoring work progress, and reviewing results.



Essential Functions:

  1. Performs microbiological analysis and microscopic examinations on raw and treated wastewater to support wastewater treatment plant process control and determine compliance with federal and state requirements, water quality standards and other regulations; may include analysis for pathogenic bacteria, viruses, protozoa and fungi; investigates disinfection problems and recommends solutions.
  2. Performs activated sludge microscopy; examines samples from various treatment processes; stains and cultures microorganisms from treatment processes; troubleshoots biological treatment processes; advises operations staff of results.
  3. Develops standard operating procedures for microbiological analysis and activated sludge microscopy; ensures methods are appropriate and meet requirements for laboratory certification.
  4. Trains staff to perform microbiological analysis and activated sludge microscopy.
  5. May serve as a lead, providing functional and technical oversight and training to assigned staff; assigns, plans, directs, coordinates and schedules assignments; monitors work progress and reviews work results.
  6. Reviews, analyzes and interprets all biomonitoring and microbiological data generated by city and contract laboratories; makes recommendations and prepares technical reports, graphs and statistical studies for the manager and others as appropriate.
  7. Ensures that laboratory maintains certification to perform microbiological analysis including scheduling lab participation in performance evaluations and accreditation programs, conferring with regulators and technical experts, and keeping abreast of regulatory and technological changes.
  8. Performs biomonitoring tests on treated wastewater; performs follow-up analyses and investigations of potential sources of toxicity; breeds, cultures or obtains the organisms necessary for biomonitoring.
  9. Designs and performs research experiments to identify potential improvements in wastewater treatment plant performance; explores alternative treatment methods; assists plant operators with problem solving.
  10. Attends meetings with city staff and external entities; represents the city in discussions related to wastewater microbiology treatment and biomonitoring.

Marginal Functions:

  1. Orders and maintains inventory of supplies and equipment related to assigned tasks.
  2. Performs routine chemical analysis required for process control and to meet federal and state requirements.
  3. Maintains compositing equipment.
  4. Schedules and oversees maintenance of microscopes; instructs co-workers in the proper use of microscopes.
  5. Performs related duties and responsibilities as required.





Three years of increasingly responsible experience in an environmental, clinical microbiological or biomonitoring laboratory.


Bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university with major in microbiology, bacteriology, biology or a field related to the essential functions. 
May substitute a combination of equivalent education and related experience.  The city assesses 1.5 years of fulltime experience as equivalent to one year of education.

License or Certificate

Possession of an appropriate, valid driver's license on the date of application, and maintenance thereafter.

Possession of a Water Quality Analyst in Training certificate from the Nevada Water Environment Association within 9 months of the date of appointment.

Possession of a Grade 1 Water Quality Analyst certificate from the Nevada Water Environment Association within 1 year of the date of appointment.

Possession of a Grade 2 Water Quality Analyst certificate from the Nevada Water Environment Association within 2 years of the date of appointment, and maintenance thereafter.




Knowledge of:

Fundamentals of microbiology.

Fundamentals of activated sludge, disinfection and other processes for wastewater treatment.

Microscopic techniques, including phase contrast, fluorescence, darkfield and microscopic photography.

Bacteriological media and staining techniques for analyses of water, wastewater and sludges.

Biomonitoring procedures for determining toxicity of wastewater.

Sampling techniques for microbiology and biomonitoring.

Techniques of culturing and maintaining organisms for biomonitoring.

Modern laboratory procedures, techniques, and equipment.

Various computer spreadsheet, database and word processing applications.

Approved methods for basic chemical, microbiological and physical analysis of water and wastewater.

Federal, state and local laws, codes and regulations related to bacteriological water quality standards and permit requirements.

Occupational hazards and standard lab and safety practices.

Techniques of technical report writing.

Skills in:

Preparing a variety of culture media, stains, microorganisms and reagents used in a bacteriological laboratory.

Interpreting and explaining applicable policies and procedures.

Conducting complex research projects.

Developing special sampling techniques.

Coordinating the activities of a technical laboratory.

Using computers and a variety of complex computer software programs.

Preparing clear and concise technical reports.

Working independently with minimal supervision.

Planning, organizing and prioritizing assignments.

Meeting critical deadlines.

Managing multiple assignments.

Communicating clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing.

Establishing and maintaining effective working relationships with those contacted in the course of work including supervisors, peers, subordinates, city officials, members of other agencies, and the general public.


Core Workforce Competencies

Professionalism – Demonstrates core values by being honest, respectful and positive.

Effective Communication – Expresses verbal and written thought in a clear and understandable manner.

Customer Focus – Demonstrates genuine concern and satisfies external and/or internal customers based on the CLV core purpose and values.

Adaptability – Able to effectively modify behavior to suit changing workforce demands.

Problem Solving – Solves problems by considering all causes, solutions and outcomes.

Productive Partnerships – Develops, maintains and strengthens partnerships with others.

Technical and Safety Expertise – Possesses a depth of knowledge, skill and ability in a technical (job) area.

Possession of a Grade 3 Water Quality Analyst certificate from the Nevada Water Environment Association, is desirable.


Job Category
Local Government
Career Level
Mid Level

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