Water Treatment Operator Class C

City of North Chicago | North Chicago, IL

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Posted Date 6/14/2022

The City of North Chicago is located in Lake County, Illinois and a suburb of the Chicago metropolitan area with a population of 32,574 and hosts the Great Lakes Naval Training Center and is home to the headquarters of Abbott and AbbVie.

Under the general direction of the Water Plant Foreman and Chief Operator, this position performs semi-skilled and skilled tasks associated with the operation, maintenance and oversight of City's Water Intake and Treatment Plant.

NATURE OF WORK : This is a semi-skilled or skilled position to provide competent operational oversight and management of the systems and equipment used in the daily production of potable water at a Class A Lake Michigan water intake and treatment plant. Work involves the use of multiple computer applications, including SCADA, to operate the water management systems, and reasoning ability and skills generally obtained by successful completion of advanced math or science classes. A general understanding of electrical power associated with large electric motors, water pressure, water chemistry and the knowledge and use of fluid formulas is helpful. Work may also include general maintenance at the water plant, and may include water tank cleaning, housekeeping, and other assistance that may be needed by contractors or other City employees. Housekeeping would include sweeping, mopping, dusting, washing of floors and windows, and any other needs as may arise. Employees may be assigned tasks of a similar or higher level classification to gain experience and training in preparation for advancement. Basic personal protective equipment (PPE) is worn during the performance of assigned duties.

Work is performed semi-independently for the assigned shift by operating the controls that power pumps and valves that are required during the treatment of water by adhering to the AWWA Standards and Standard Operating Procedures that have or may be adopted by the AWWA and/or the City of North Chicago for ensuring optimal operation and maintenance of the City’s water intake and drinking water treatment plant.

The incumbent is responsible for completing all duties and reporting as defined for the position. Additional duties may be assigned as need arises. General direction is provided by the Water Plant Foreman and/or water personnel having superior knowledge or experience. Assignments may be verbal or in writing, and will follow the adopted SOP’s and timelines regarding the daily, weekly and other periodic duties.

The incumbent is responsible for ensuring that all equipment and supplies needed to successfully operate the water treatment plant are available and in working order at the beginning of the shift, including systems that regulate the dosage of the various chemicals used in the treatment of water.

The incumbent may have to collect water samples, and will be required to make scheduled inspection rounds of the water plant to check on the plant security, and the operational status and integrity of the motors and pumps, noting deficiencies encountered or observed in the Operator’s Log for follow up action. When deficiencies or abnormalities are encountered (may be determined through system detection or water sample analysis) it is expected that action be taken within the incumbent’s scope of authority to immediately correct the noted deficiency. When the deficiency is such that it is beyond the incumbent’s ability to correct, or if immediate action by others more experienced or knowledgeable is deemed necessary or required, the incumbent must immediately contact a more senior operator for direction.

The incumbent may be called upon at any time to answer questions related to shift activities, notes or other issues as they arise. Daily work is reviewed by assessing the thoroughness and accuracy of shift reports required of the incumbent, and/or external laboratories water sample analysis. Guidance is provided through USEPA and ILEPA rules and regulations, and City of North Chicago policies and procedures pertaining to the operation of the water treatment plant. Further guidance is provided by the City of North Chicago personnel rules, Employee Handbook, SEIU Agreement and other relevant regulatory, industry and/or safety agencies, such as OSHA and AWWA. Work is evaluated daily for the accurate, safe and skilled operation of equipment, quality tasks, adherence to work rules. Performance evaluations are in accordance with this classification standard.

The incumbent is expected to complete assignments without detailed instructions, and is responsible for completing the work following Standard Operating Procedures, protocols, work rules and regulations. Work is reviewed through ongoing observation, written and verbal communications, meetings and feedback from the supervisor and from other department employees.

PUBLIC CONTACT: The incumbent has regular contact with City employees, may have occasional contact with Elected Officials, the public, contractor personnel and vendors. The incumbent must be able to maintain effective and appropriate communications, proper office decorum, answer the telephone and make use of the telephone or email to answer questions and provide information, as well as to accurately explain water testing protocols or other programs. Some contact may be of a difficult nature, and the incumbent must at all times be respectful, professional and must consistently use good judgment when interacting, whether verbally or in writing, with all others with whom interaction occurs.

ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS OF WORK(Likely to include some or all of the following):

  •  Ability to obtain and maintain a Class C or D Illinois Water Operator’s license within 6 months of hire. 
  • Ability to collect and perform basic water sample testing for water plant production performance analysis per schedule, and to accurately record the same in relevant logs. 
  • Provide water analysis for internal or external water sampling related to lead, impurities and finished water quality, and accurately record all results in relevant logs.
  • Checks and records samples for chlorine residual, color, pH, and turbidity. 
  • Must be able to prepare and interpret test results, and generate accurate reports, as well as to take immediate corrective actions when need arises to remedy abnormalities and/or deficiencies to ensure the continuous, uninterrupted operational integrity of the water treatment plant.
  • Back washes and bleeds filters of air and dirt, operates motors and pumps to maintain the proper water flow and level in filters and intermediate treatment tanks and water storage facilities according to schedule and operating protocols. 
  • Ability and knowledge to properly operate and/or repair the water treatment plant (WTP) equipment when needed, including all filtration equipment and chemical feed systems, pumps and related equipment.
  •  As directed, may perform emergency or other preventive maintenance on certain water plant equipment indoors or outdoors as need may arise.
  •  Provide or assist with the reasonable cleaning of the equipment and/or work area. Duties may include standard maintenance and/or those typically associated with janitorial work. 
  • Ability to make prescribed periodic inspection rounds on all levels of the water treatment plant to ensure the security and integrity of the water treatment plant and its operating systems. 
  • Summon additional personnel as conditions and needs dictate to ensure the safe and continual operation of the water treatment plant. 
  • Complete, or assist, in the collection and recording of data related to water, including the generation of daily operational shift reports. 
  • May assist in the receiving of chemicals, or other materials as need arises.
  •  May assist with or provide technical communications as need arises, including interacting with members of the public, the media and others regarding water operations. 
  • Other assignments which may develop during the normal or abnormal course of operating the water treatment plant, and field operations

Salary: $52,388.00 - $67,488.00 Annually/DOQ

Benefits Include: Medical, Dental, Vision, Life Insurance, Vacation, Sick, Holiday pay, and participation in IMRF Retirement.

Applicants can apply online at www.northchicago.org under Employment Center, or forward resume to: elibla@northchicago.org.


    • Knowledge of, or experience in, the treatment and distribution of drinking water, and/or mechanical and operational knowledge of the equipment and chemical processes required to operate a water treatment plant. 
    • Requires High School Diploma or G.E.D. Certificate. 
    • Must be able to climb, bend, pull, push, squat, reach and lift at least 50 lbs.
    •  Must be available to work all shifts, at times during emergencies, and available to be on call 24 hours. 
    • Knowledge of computer systems such as the Microsoft Office Suite products, including SCADA systems functionality related to water plant operations and water chemical metering infusion and control systems.
Job Category
Local Government
Career Level
Entry Level

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