Report on Senior Planner/Associate Planner

Senior Planner/Associate Planner


Depending on qualifications, the successful candidate will be appointed at either a Senior Planner or Associate Planner. All applicants are required to provide a cover letter to be considered for either position. 

Manages, and coordinates the processing and review of a wide variety of challenging legislative and/or development projects.  Provides project management responsibilities over a diverse group of professionals and technical multi-disciplinary team members, including consultants, for comprehensive and community planning, development and implementation of land use regulations, growth management, transportation planning, capital improvements/facilities programming, environmental review and code administration. Administers the preparation of planning work program components, plans, studies, and reports.

Responsible for providing professional level planning support to administrative and senior-level planning staff, with emphasis on project management and/or as a technical specialist in a particular aspect of planning, for a wide range of land use proposals including subdivisions, special use permits and variances.. Coordinates the preparation and/or administration of comprehensive plan, public policy and development regulations. Works with a team of professional planners and support staff from pre-application through the public review process. Provides recommendations to the Hearing Examiner, Planning Commission and Board of County Commissioners. Provides timely responses to public inquires relating to the land use code.

The salary range upon hire for Senior Planner is between $31.12 - 33.34 per hour, depending upon qualifications.
The salary range upon hire for Associate Planner is between $27.10 - 29.05 per hour, depending upon qualifications.

Depending on assignment, duties may include:

Coordinates the processing of a wide variety of challenging projects that require multi-disciplinary team review; functions as the primary point of contact on assigned development projects for the applicant, public, staff and/or decision makers; requests the assignment of appropriate multidisciplinary team members for assigned projects from department managers and ensures that appropriate levels and functions of staff are present at project meetings to make decisions; monitors project review timelines, seeks expertise outside the team as necessary, communicates when needed with project proponents/opponents, and serves to resolve procedural issues.
Serves as Skagit County project manager for major and often multiple legislative projects being developed by consultants under contract with the County.  In this capacity, directly supervises professionals in consultant offices, including control of project scope, schedule and budget.  Reviews and approves the technical work of consultants, contracting agencies, and other organizations as appropriate. 
Communicates and interacts with elected officials and administrators of public agencies/departments and executives of private organizations, at the request and on behalf of the Senior Planner Team Supervisor/Deputy Director/Director, to analyze, evaluate, resolve and educate others on public policy issues and land use regulations. 
Responds to public inquiries with information on public policy, comprehensive planning, development codes and land use regulations.
Advises, prepares and presents reports and recommendations to the County commissioners, planning commission, hearing examiner, committees, community groups, and private organizations regarding comprehensive planning, regulatory ordinances, and development proposals/projects.
May establish and prepare methodologies for data collection, analysis, and studies related to land use, transportation, growth management, community development, environmental impacts, and land use proposals/projects.
May conduct data collection and processing to facilitate a consistent and comprehensive information system.
Conducts investigation, analysis, and preparation of documents for public policy issues, community planning and development.
Subject to quality control review of the Senior Planner Team Supervisor, Director and/or Assistant Director, has authority to approve/deny current planning projects that have/have not been determined to meet the requirements of the Code.
Responds to public inquiries with information on the comprehensive planning process, public policy and development regulations.

Interprets and administers land use code under the supervision of the Team Supervisor.

Conducts data collection, analysis, and studies related to land use, growth management, environmental planning issues, policies and their applications.

Manages scopes and reviews the technical work of consultants, contracting agencies, and other organizations as appropriate.

Assists with policy and plan development.

Attends pre-application meetings and provides direction and guidance on the land use review process.

Prepares staff reports and recommendations addressing land use proposals.

Provides on call support to front desk inquires and responds to public in a courteous manner, provides information within scope of knowledge.

Meets with applicants and/or consultants to review land use issues, both in the office and occasionally in the field.

Provides technical support and assistance to code compliance officer.

Prepares and presents written, oral and visual reports, maps, and graphics and makes recommendations to the Board of County Commissioners, Planning Commission, Hearing Examiner, Citizen Advisory Committees, community groups, and private organizations related to land use.

Advises appointed and elected officials on public policy issues, planning procedures, comprehensive or sub-area plans, as well as regulatory ordinances, or their amendments. 

Attends conferences, seminars and other meetings as directed.  Provides quality customer service as the visible presence of Skagit County in the eyes of permit applicants supporting the projects, assisting applicants in understanding their legal options as determined by local and state law and codes and expediting project reviews for prompt processing and approval or denial as necessary.
May be tasked with performing related duties.  Related duties as required are duties that may not be specifically listed in the position description, but are within the general occupational series and responsibility level typically associated with the employee's classification of work.

Bachelor's degree in Urban or regional planning, public policy/administration, environmental studies, natural resources management, geography or related field combined with 10 years professional planning experience.
Master degree in Urban or regional planning, public policy/administration, environmental studies, natural resources management, geography or related field combined with 8 years professional planning experience.

Bachelor's Degree with specific area of study being, planning, geography, natural resources, natural sciences or environmental studies.

Between three to five years' of experience in planning or related fields.

An equivalent combination of education and experience may be substituted which provides the skills, knowledge and abilities to perform the essential functions of the position.

Requires knowledge of:

  • Broad basis in public policy formation and analysis, governmental processes, and public and private sector economics is essential.
  • Planning purpose and functions involved with growth management, development codes, land use, transportation, shoreline and coastal management programs, capital facilities, environmental and community development.
  • Conflict management skills.
  • Project/consultant management skills.
  • Computer operations, applications, and general office equipment skills. 
Requires ability to:
  • Communicate clearly and effectively both verbally and in writing and to establish and maintain good working relationships with County commissioners, the planning commission, officials of other jurisdictions, project applicants or proponents, Department employees and other professionals, consultants, citizen groups, the general public and other agencies and departments.
  • Plan, schedule and review the work and performance of contracted consultants.
  • Prepare and direct the preparation of reports, departmental materials and correspondence.
  • Use, understand and interpret statutes, codes and other planning related subjects.
  • Comprehend and communicate complex policy and legal issues to policymakers and the general public. Performs duties as required that may not be specifically listed in the Position Description but are within the general occupational series and responsibility level typically associated with the employee's classification of work.
Licenses and/or Certifications:
AICP or comparable professional certification or licensing preferred.
Work is typically performed in an office environment.  Work requires remaining seated for long periods of time.  Some outdoor on-site review may be required. Occasional lifting, crawling, climbing or walking on uneven or steep terrain. High level of analytical ability, calculation of dimensional requirements, analyzing site plan and building measurements, ability to multi-task. Occasionally, night meetings may be required. 
Those present in a normal office environment. Physical hazard may be present during inspection of unsafe job sites. Occasional walking on uneven or steep terrain. Driving hazards to sites and meetings. Possible hazards in the field such as dogs, upset landowners, etc.

Following review of applications and resumes, the highest qualified applicants will be interviewed and may be tested. After a selection is made, all applicants not selected will be notified in writing. Skagit County reserves the right to use applications received for this posting to fill any other positions within this classification which may open within six months following the closing of this position.
Skagit County, as an equal employment opportunity employer, encourages applicants from diverse backgrounds to apply.

It is the policy of Skagit County to follow all federal and state laws to ensure non-discrimination in its employment practices.

American with Disabilities Act (ADA) Notice: Individuals, who need an ADA accommodation to complete the application, test or interview process, please call: (360) 416-1380.
The statements contained herein reflect general details as necessary to describe the essential functions of this position, the level of knowledge and skill typically required, and the scope of responsibility, but should not be considered an all-inclusive listing of work requirements. Individuals may perform other duties as assigned, including work in other functional areas to cover absences or relief, to equalize peak work periods, or otherwise to balance the workload. Changes to the position description may be made at the discretion of the employer.

Experience Requirements: 
Not requirements
Date posted:
Job Id: