Soil Conservationist (District Conservationist)
* Duties Help Duties Summary The incumbent serves as a District Conservationist assisting the Conservation Districts within the managerial unit, consisting of one or more counties or districts, in the development of a comprehensive natural resources conservation program. The incumbent performs expert professional duties to achieve an integrated system of sound land use and conservation treatment in harmony with the capability and needs of the land and landowner. Learn more about this agency Responsibilities * Works in collaboration with landowner to provide detailed conservation system and practice implementation including conservation practice design, layout, construction, inspection and certification. * Management, operation and maintenance of the planned conservation system and practices according to the Field Office Technical Guide standards and specifications as well as comply with all federal, state and local regulations. * Informs and educates the landowner of conservation technical assistance and financial assistance to consider for conservation system and practice implementation. This includes oversight, management and administration for Farm Bill programs. * Independently provides leadership with conservation planning of natural resources and other activities in cooperation with the Conservation District, tribes, and conservation partners to address resource concerns on private lands. * Coordinates interagency delivery of conservation assistance to private landowners and others to sustain the health, diversity and productivity of the state's natural resources. * Partners with other conservation entities to provide long-term commitment to the local, state and federal government conservation delivery system to help private landowners, communities and others conserve natural resources within the state. * Responsible for supervision of federal employees located in multiple field offices and liaison between state and district employees. Independently ensure quality and quantity of work, review work of subordinates and accept, revise, or reject work. * Sets performance standards and evaluates performance for subordinates. Travel Required Occasional travel - You may be expected to travel for this position. Supervisory status Yes Promotion Potential 12 * Job family (Series) 0457 Soil Conservation * Requirements Help Requirements Conditions of Employment * You must be a US Citizen or US National. * Males born after 12/31/1959 must be Selective Service registered or exempt. * Subject to satisfactory adjudication of background investigation and/or fingerprint check. * Subject to one-year supervisory/managerial probationary period unless prior service is creditable. New USDA supervisors must successfully complete all components of the required training program before the end of their probationary period. * Direct Deposit - Per Public Law 104-134 all Federal employees are required to have federal payments made by direct deposit to their financial institution. * Successfully pass the E-Verify employment verification check. To learn more about E-Verify, including your rights and responsibilities, visit E-Verify at https://www.e-verify.gov/. * Must possess and maintain a valid state motor vehicle operator's license for the type of vehicle(s) operated to perform the duties of this position. * Incumbent is required to obtain Conservation Planning Level certification. Qualifications Applicants must meet all qualifications and eligibility requirements by the closing date of the announcement including time-in-grade restrictions, specialized experience and/or education, as defined below. Time-in-Grade Requirement: Applicants who have held a General Schedule (GS) position with the federal service within the past 12 months must have one year at the next lower grade to be considered for the next higher grade (e.g. one year at the GS-11 grade level for consideration for the GS-12 grade level). You must submit a recent SF-50 to verify you meet this requirement. Basic Education Requirement: All applicants must have one of the following: Degree: soil conservation or related agricultural or natural resource discipline such as agronomy, soil science, forestry, agricultural education, or agricultural engineering. The study must have included 30 semester hours in a natural resource or agricultural field, including at least 12 semester hours in a combination of soils and crops or plant science. Of the 12 semester hours, a minimum of 3 semester hours must have been in soils and 3 semester hours in crops or plant science; OR Combination of Education and Experience: At least 30 semester hours in one or more of the disciplines as shown above, including at least 12 semester hours in a combination of soils and crops or plant science, plus appropriate experience or additional education comparable to a 4 year degree. Of the 12 semester hours, a minimum of 3 semester hours must have been in soils and 3 semester hours in crops or plant science. Evaluation of Education: Education that provided specialized knowledge and skills in soil and water conservation is more valuable than education that imparted broad but general knowledge and skills. Courses in soil fertility, soil chemistry, soil genesis, plant physiology, plant science, and field crops are examples of specialized courses that contribute towards meeting the required 12 semester hours as described above. Courses in the physical sciences or engineering such as geology, civil engineering, and hydrology also meet the soils, crops, or plant science course requirements where such courses included a complete introduction to the physical, chemical, and biological properties of soils. In addition to meeting one of the Basic Requirements listed above, applicants must meet the following Minimum Qualifications Requirement in order to be considered: Specialized Experience: To qualify for the GS-12 grade level, you must possess at least one year of specialized experience equivalent to the GS-11 level or higher in the Federal service, or comparable experience not gained through federal service. This experience must include knowledge of the principles and theories of soil and water conservation and related sciences such as biology, agronomy, and forestry, in identifying conservation related problems. Examples of specialized experience include: * Analyzing workloads, developing and implementing annual work or business plans, and establishing goals within the constraints of funding and staff availability. * Directing technical guidance and assistance to groups and individuals on topics such as soil interpretations, erosion control measures, pest and invasive species control, water quality improvements, livestock management, wildlife habitat, and forest management. * Preparing complex conservation or resource management plans and providing financial or implementation assistance. * Communicating and sharing technical information and explaining issues related to natural resource conservation, problems, and solutions to landowners, residents, and land managers. * Implementing and/or managing natural resources programs and practices which involve exercising initiative and resourcefulness. Note: There is no education substitution for the GS-12 level. For more information on the qualifications for this position, click here: https://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/classification-qualifications/general-schedule-qualification-standards/#url=GS-PROF Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religious; spiritual; community, student, social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience. Evaluation of Experience: Experience that included the application of techniques, principles, and methods from a variety of agricultural and natural resource fields is appropriate, given the interdisciplinary character of the soil conservation occupation. For example, experience gained in a specialized field such as soil science, forestry, or agronomy is as fully acceptable as experience directly obtained in soil conservation work. Education You must submit a copy of your college transcripts or a list of college courses with credit hours, dates completed, and grades received to verify all education requirements (i.e. substitution of education and/or basic education requirement). If a relevant course is not clearly qualifying (e.g. special topic, seminar, research, thesis, obscure or misleading course title, etc.), please submit an official course syllabi and/or detailed course description from the university/college for that particular course to ensure you are properly evaluated. Please note that qualifications determinations are based solely on the information submitted for each particular vacancy announcement. You must document all requirements on every vacancy; we cannot use previous determinations as a basis for rating. All required information must be received by the closing date of this announcement, and non-submission of all required documents/documentation will result in non-consideration. Unofficial transcripts will be accepted. This information must be received by the closing date of this announcement. Non-submission of these documents will result in non-consideration. Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Applicants must, therefore, only report attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Applicants can verify accreditation via this link. All education claimed by applicants will be verified accordingly. Important: If you are using foreign education to meet qualification requirements, you must send a Certificate of Foreign Equivalency with your transcript in order to receive credit for that education. Click on this link for more information.