Director of Public Works

City of Wharton | Wharton, TX

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Posted Date 1/11/2021

To plan, direct, manage and oversee the activities and operations of the Public Works Department; to coordinate assigned activities with other city departments and outside agencies; and to provide highly responsible and complex administrative support to the City Manager.


Receives general administrative direction from the City Manager.

Exercises direct supervision over supervisory, maintenance, technical and clerical staff.

EXAMPLES OF IMPORTANT RESPONSIBILITIES AND DUTIES--Essential and other important responsibilities and duties may include, but are not limited to, the following:

Essential duties and responsibilities:

Assume full management responsibility for all Public Works Department services and activities; recommend and administer policies and procedures.

Manage the development and implementation of Public Works Department goals, objectives, policies, and priorities for each assigned service area.

Establish, within city policy, appropriate service and staffing levels; monitor and evaluate the efficiency and effectiveness of service delivery methods and procedures; allocate resources accordingly.

Plan, direct and coordinate, through subordinate level field supervisors, the Public Works Department's work plan; assign projects and programmatic areas of responsibility; review and evaluate work methods and procedures; meet with staff to identify and resolve problems.

Assess and monitor work load, administrative and support systems, and internal reporting relationships; identify opportunities for improvement; direct and implement changes.

Select, train, motivate and evaluate Public Works Department personnel; provide or coordinate staff training; work with employees to correct deficiencies; implement discipline and termination procedures.

Answer questions and provide information to the public; investigate complaints and recommend corrective action as necessary to resolve complaints.

Maintain contact with contractors; conduct inspections on contractors' work; profile and determine grades for drainage projects.

Oversee and participate in the development and administration of the Public Works Department budget; approve the forecast of funds needed for staffing, equipment, materials and supplies; approve expenditures and implement budgetary adjustments as appropriate and necessary.

Preparation of cost estimates, plans and specifications, letting of construction contracts, inspection of construction projects and preparation and maintenance of contractors pay estimates and other project records for work conducted by City Personnel and/or small contractors. Supervises the preparation and maintenance of necessary plans, maps, notes, plats, profiles and other engineering records.

Coordinates the proportion of Capital improvements needs, estimates and prepares projections and priority recommendations for short and long range Capital Improvements Program, strategic plan and Engineering division operating budget.

Coordinates the selection of architectural and engineering consulting services for Public Works projects and reviews subtotals from consultants for compliance with local standards and accepted practice.

Essential duties and responsibilities:

. Makes periodic water and wastewater rate studies involving detailed cost of services analysis following modern rate development methodology with recommendations for rate adjustment.
. Explain, justify and defend Public Works Department programs, policies, and activities; negotiate and resolve sensitive and controversial issues.

. Represent the Public Works Department to other city departments, elected officials and outside agencies; coordinate Public Works Department activities with those of other departments and outside agencies and organizations.

. Provide staff assistance to the City Manager; participate on a variety of boards, commissions and committees; prepare and present staff reports and other necessary correspondence.

. Monitor the solid waste contract to ensure compliance; stay abreast of all maintenance activities at the airport.

Other important duties and responsibilities:

1. Attend and participate in professional group meetings; stay abreast of new trends and innovations in the field of public works.

2. Stay abreast of new rules and regulations affecting public works activities.

3. Perform related duties and responsibilities as required.


Knowledge of:

Modern and complex principles and practices of a comprehensive public works program.

Organizational and management practices as applied to the analysis and evaluation of programs, policies and operational needs.

Principles and practices of organization, administration and personnel management.

Advanced principles and practices of budget preparation and administration.

Principles and techniques of supervision, training and performance evaluation.

General engineering practices, principles and codes as they apply to public works.

City functions and responsibilities in satisfying and remedying community needs, desires and problem areas.

Knowledge of:

Pertinent federal, state and local laws, ordinances and regulations.

Ability to:

Apply engineering practices, principles and codes appropriately.

Gain cooperation through discussion and persuasion.

Select, supervise, train and evaluate assigned staff.

Prepare and administer a budget.

Analyze problems, identify alternative solutions, project consequences of proposed actions and implement recommendation in support of goals.

Effectively administer a variety of Public Works activities.

Identify and respond to public and City Council issues and concerns.

Interpret and apply federal, state and local policies, procedures, laws and regulations.

Communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing.

Establish and maintain effective working relationships with those contacted in the course of work.

Maintain physical condition appropriate to the performance of assigned duties and responsibilities which may include the following:
- walking, standing or sitting for extended periods of time
- operating assigned equipment.

Maintain effective audio-visual discrimination and perception needed for:
- making observations
- reading and writing
- communicating with others.
- operating assigned equipment.

Maintain mental capacity which permits:
- making sound decisions and using good judgement
- demonstrating intellectual capabilities.
Experience and Training Guidelines
Any combination of experience and training that would likely provide the required knowledge and abilities is qualifying. A typical way to obtain the knowledge and abilities would be:


Three years of increasingly responsible experience in public works, three years of administrative and supervisory responsibility, and experience in the Civil Engineering field preferably with a municipal or county government (with emphases on utility, street and drainage projects).


Degree in Civil Engineering from an accredited college or university and professional registration in the State of Texas, preferred. Valid Texas Driver's License with suitable driving record.


Environmental Conditions:

Office/field environment; travel from site to site; work closely with others and independently.

Physical Conditions:

Essential and other important responsibilities and duties may require maintaining physical condition necessary for walking, standing or sitting for prolonged periods of time; light to moderate lifting.

Job Category
Local Government
Career Level

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