Job Details

Director of Public Works
City of Westfield, MA
Job Description

A supervisory, administrative and overall management position responsible for all aspects relating to the operations and maintenance of several Public Works divisions including highway, refuse & recycling, parks & recreation (including land & natural resources) water and wastewater (including sewer & stormwater) systems and staff. In general, the director oversees the physical facilities of the community and any services that enable it to function.

Performs responsible duties requiring a high degree of individual initiative and independence from direct supervision. Work is performed under the direction of the Water Commission and the Board of Public Works, which are the joint appointing authority to a 3-year term. Operating within policy guidelines established and documented by the Boards, the Director operates in conformity with federal, state and local standards. The Director is expected to operate within the parameters of good judgement, established business practices, City policies and procedures and the law.

Supervises, both directly and through subordinates, all personnel of the Public Works Department.

The Director is responsible for reviewing the proposals of the public works staff with the ability to develop long-term programs that enhance the community The Director presents plans to the appropriate assistant department heads for consideration and then assigns work to the staff once a project has been selected. The Director analyzes completed projects against the budget in order to track the group's spending and the success of the project.

Plan, direct and coordinate, through subordinate level supervisory and managerial personnel, the Public Works Department work plan including street maintenance and construction, central maintenance, engineering, solid waste services, land and natural resources, water, sewer, stormwater and wastewater treatment; assign projects and areas of responsibility; review and evaluate work methods and procedures; meet with management staff to identify and resolve problems; and to provide highly responsible and complex administrative support to the City.

Recommends annual budget and capital improvement plans for Water Commission and Board of Public Works approval. Presents and advocates for Board approved budget during City budget process. Monitors and reviews the revenue levels and expenditures to ensure adherence to budget limitations. Responsible for presenting policy matters to the Board for approval. Attends and participates in all Board meetings unless excused. Acts as liaison between the Department and the City of Westfield by attending and contributing to all City department head meetings, City Council meetings, or other such meetings as requested to attend.

Responsible for personnel management and supervision. In conformity with City policies and State law, and within authority as granted by the Water Commission and Board of Public Works, recruits, interviews, and hires department employees. Consistent with union contracts and relevant City policies, schedules and assigns work, monitors work flow and engages in employee disciplinary actions. Performs employee evaluations, reviews, and such other personnel actions as necessary to assure safe and effective operations.

Investigate and prepare appropriate reports for all incidents and accidents occurring on departmental property. Report to all appropriate personnel and agencies.

As required to accomplish the above may have to create bid specifications and recommend vendors for projects, enlists such professional, consultant, engineering or construction assistance as approved by the Commission and Board. Supervises compliance and assures timely and tech-nically adequate performance of contractual requirements.

Where federal and/or state grant assistance is involved, assures the timely application for aid, adequacy of documentation of grant agreements and compliance with conditions of grants. May also seek necessary funding from federal and state sources.

Direct the development and implementation of Public Works Department goals, objectives, policies and priorities for each assigned service area. Serve as one of the City’s resources for technical engineering expertise

Knowledge of general business practices and personnel management. Ability to deal with appropriate governmental agencies. General knowledge of administrative and management practices and Federal, State, and Municipal regulations.

Must possess knowledge of Federal, State, and local laws relating to Public Works, Water and Wastewater Treatment operations including knowledge of administration, supervision, promotion and emergency operating procedures.

Familiarity with environmental protection issues as they relate to Public Works, Water and Wastewater operations including wild life and vegetation protection as well as water resource protection and noise pollution regulations.

Ability to deal effectively with state and federal officials and agencies, other city officials, employees and the general public; ability to supervise and evaluate the work of subordinates; ability to maintain good public relations. Ability to communicate effectively both orally and in writing. Ability to exercise good judgement in adverse situations. Ability to prepare capital plans and annual budgets; ability to plan, organize and direct the preparation of reports, analyze problems and formulate recommendations. Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with employees, board/committee members, officials and the general public.

Ability to interpret and utilize technical sketches and plans. Familiarity of Geographical Information Systems (GIS). Assess and monitor the City’s infrastructure to provide adequate levels of public service both for existing systems/networks and extensions/developments. Knowledge of construction techniques involving wastewater plants, water systems, streets and roads, drainage systems, flood control and sanitary sewers.

Analyze problems, identify alternative solutions, project consequences of proposed actions and implement recommendations in support of goals. Respond to and resolve difficult and sensitive citizen inquiries and complaints.

Advanced skills in use of personal computers, basic software programs and internet applications will be essential to complete reports and develop budget, and capital improvement plans.

Most work is generally performed under typical office conditions with frequent tours of city streets, parks, watershed areas and wastewater treatment plant, occasional exposure to variable outdoor weather conditions and hazards, particularly in emergency situations. Must work outdoors as needed, regardless of weather. Required to attend evening meetings.

Ability to work in small spaces, at heights, climb stairs/steps, and pass respiratory physical. Ability to work in filthy conditions and not be affected by strong and/or putrid odors.

Ability to carry out the functions and duties and to work in the environmental conditions required of this position as described in the necessary knowledge, ability and skills for dexterity and communication.

Bachelor’s Degree in Civil, Environmental or Chemical Engineering required, additional engineering disciplines or education in Business Management or Public Administration will be considered with the requisite experience. Massachusetts State P.E. License preferred. No less than ten (10) years supervisory and management experience in a public works, wastewater or water-related business or enterprise required. Five (5) years or more as a Department Head, Executive Director or similar Governmental experience with emphasis on municipal management desired.

Job Details
$102,000 - $116,828
Job Function:
Public Works Director
Position Type:
Full Time
City of Westfield
59 Court St
Westfield, MA 01085-3520
United States
Population: 41,119
Form of Government: Mayor-Council

Related Content

Career Resource Guides

Resources on understanding the looming talent crisis, hiring a manager, assisting first-time managers, building an internship program, planning for succession, and more.

Breaking into Local Government

A complimentary guidebook for career-changers looking to break into local government management.

ICMA Job Hunting Handbook for Local Government Professionals

Job hunting can be time-consuming and anxiety-producing!

Preparing for an Interview

Following are some recommendations as you prepare for your interview.