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City of Tacoma WA Sewer Worker in Tacoma, Washington

Sewer Worker


$26.57 - $32.30 Hourly


Tacoma, WA

Job Type



Environmental Services

Job Number



ES Sewer Operations


2/1/2022 5:00 PM Pacific

  • Description

  • Benefits

  • Questions

Position Description


The City of Tacoma is recruiting for the position of Sewer Worker. The Sewer Worker classification is the entry-level class of the Sewer Worker series. Sewer Workers perform technical and physical work related to the construction, maintenance and repair of stormwater and sanitary sewer mains to sustain a continuing program of sewer system maintenance.

Sewer Workers maintain Tacoma's municipal sanitary and surface water systems by:

  • Installing, cleaning, and repairing sewer lines and storm drains of grease, roots, dirt and other debris with rodding and water pressure equipment

  • Assisting in the installation, construction, and repair of pipes and pipe connections, reinforce and shore trenches, and work in confined spaces and within traffic zones.

  • Televising sewers and laterals; locating breaks in utility lines; inspects sewer lines for defects.

  • Performing traffic control functions such as placing barricades, directing/flagging, re-routing traffic.

  • Operates a variety of pneumatic, hydraulic, gas and hand powered tools, equipment and machinery related to duties,

  • Cleaning & maintaining sewer lines, traps, lift stations, and operating related equipment including sewer/vacuum truck.

  • Assisting with concrete street repair including: setting grades and forms, smoothing out, leveling and finishing.

  • Using cold patch to fill potholes and make other road repairs.

  • Utilizing proper safety measures and personal protective equipment (PPE) while performing job duties.

  • Responding to utility emergencies while on-duty and during off-duty hours, including

  • Frequent interactions with other City employees and the public.

Our Ideal Candidate/s are people with the following skills:

  • Enthusiastic, cheerful and helpful team members.

  • Great customer service skills

  • Excellent attendance

  • Strong work ethic

This recruitment is being conducted to create a civil service eligibility list that will be used to fill Sewer Worker vacancies as they occur for one year. There are both permanent and Project positions available in this classification.

Physical Requirements and Working Conditions:

  • Outdoor environment; subject to noise, fumes, adverse weather conditions and driving from site to site; subject to emergency calls during off-duty hours.

  • Position requires lifting heavy objects and climbing.

  • An employee in this position is exposed to raw sewage, traffic and underground construction hazards.

Work Schedule

These positions are overtime eligible and employees are subject to a 24-hour call-out response to emergencies. These positions are staffed as a 9/80 schedule, which is defined as follows: in a two-week pay period, four days at nine (9) hours, Monday – Thursday, and one eight (8) hour day, Friday, the first week, followed by four days at nine (9) hours, Monday – Thursday, each work day with a one-half (1/2) hour unpaid lunch, with the fifth day, Friday, off work, the second week.

Week 1



Week 2



Monday - Thursday

30 minutes



Monday - Thursday

30 minutes




30 minutes




30 minutes



  • Or the reverse of Week 1 & Week 2

City of Tacoma Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion

Tacoma's diversity is its greatest asset. Tacoma embraces its multi-cultural and multi-ethnic character. Communities of color and immigrant communities are fundamental to Tacoma's entrepreneurial spirit, workforce, and long-term success. In Tacoma, equity and empowerment are top priorities, meaning that all Tacoma residents must have equitable opportunities to reach their full potential and share in the benefits of community progress. One of our goals is for the City of Tacoma workforce to reflect the community it serves. We actively work to eliminate racial and other disparities and welcome candidates with diverse backgrounds and/or multicultural skill sets and experiences. Our goal is for Tacoma to be an inclusive and equitable place to live, work, and play.



Sufficient training and experience to demonstrate the knowledge and abilities listed above (also in the knowledge and skills section).


Valid Washington State driver's license is required at time of appointment, with maintenance thereafter.


  • Graduation from high school or equivalent.

  • 1 year paid work experience performing general construction or repair work, which has included excavation, trenching, shoring activities or heavy physical labor

Knowledge & Skills


  • Methods, practices, procedures, and techniques of storm and sanitary sewer installation, repair, maintenance, and cleaning.

  • Interpersonal skills using tact, patience, and courtesy. Health and safety regulations.

  • Proper methods of storing equipment, materials, and supplies.


  • Learn storm and sanitary sewer main and lateral distribution and runoff lines.

  • Perform heavy manual labor for extended periods.

  • Operate various tools and related equipment.

  • Operate trucks to perform sewer-related activities.

  • Lift objects weighing up to 90 pounds.

  • Understand and follow oral and written directions.

  • Establish and maintain cooperative and effective working relationships with others and the general public.

  • Observe legal and defensive driving practices.

Selection Process & Supplemental Information

To be considered for this opportunity:

Interested individuals must apply online and meet the minimum qualifications to progress in the examination process.

Candidates who are eligible for Veteran's Preference scoring criteria must attach a copy of their DD-214 member copy 4, (proof of military discharge form) at time of application, to be eligible for review for Veteran's Preference points.

Examination Process:

This is a competitive selection process. Applicants who meet the minimum qualifications will have their responses to the Supplemental Questions # 9-13 reviewed and scored by a committee of subject matter experts, as the Experience and Training Test. It is the responsibility of the applicants to adequately describe all pertinent experience and training. Please make sure you read the questions and provide complete informative answers, including your roles in the position and key activities.

Candidates who pass the test will be placed on an Eligible List for potential interview and hiring consideration.

Any vacancy that comes up within a one year period of time will draw from candidates on the Eligible List for potential interview selection.

Per City of Tacoma Personnel Management Policy #170, the City of Tacoma is a drug-free work environment. Appointment is subject to passing a pre-employment background check and references check, a pre-employment medical exam, drug and alcohol screen and physical ability test.

This position is covered by a Labor Agreement between the City of Tacoma and Teamsters Local 313. New employees must successfully complete a nine-month probationary period prior to obtaining permanent status in this classification.


The City of Tacoma offers a generous program of employee benefits:

  • Outstanding working conditions and an exceptional quality-of-life environment.

  • Medical coverage for eligible employees, spouses and dependents, including children up to age 26.

  • Vision care with VSP for employees and eligible dependents enrolled in the Regence PPO medical plan with vision benefits.

  • Dental coverage for eligible employees and their elected dependents, including dependent children up to the age of 26.

  • Deferred compensation allowing tax-deferred savings as authorized under Section 457 of the IRS Code.

  • Personal time off.

  • Paid holidays.

  • A great pension plan.

Our City:

With a population of over 210,000, Tacoma is the second largest city in the Puget Sound region, gracing the shores of Commencement Bay. We are a diverse, progressive, international city that serves as a gateway to the Pacific Rim and the rest of the world. Named one of the most livable areas in the country by, Tacoma and the surrounding area is a playground for outdoor and maritime enthusiasts. Our businesses are vibrant, our parks are beautiful, our schools are exceptional and our housing is affordable.

When you work for the City of Tacoma you'll have the opportunity to enjoy a healthy work/life balance, the potential for flexible work schedules (with some job classifications), continuing education programs, leadership pathways, wellness incentives and a total rewards benefits program. We welcome you to take a look at our website and discover how the City of Tacoma can make your next career move part of our combined destiny:

The City of Tacoma believes that each employee makes a significant contribution to our success. This job description is designed to outline primary duties, qualifications and job scope. The omission of specific statements of duties does not exclude them from the position if the work is similar, related or a logical assignment to the position.

Communication from the City of Tacoma:

We primarily communicate via e-mail during the application process. E-mails from and/or must be placed on your safe domain list to ensure that you receive notifications in a timely manner. As a precaution, you may also want to check your junk e-mail folders.

The online application system requires you to enter a substantial amount of information. Be prepared to spend an hour or more entering the required information. In order for your application materials to be considered, all information must be submitted by the closing date and time listed on this job announcement.

If you have any additional questions regarding this position, please contact the Human Resources Department at 253.591.5400, before 4:00 pm on the closing date.

The City of Tacoma provides excellent medical, dental and vision plans for the whole family; paid holidays and paid leave; participation in the Tacoma Public Employees' Retirement System (alternate plan for Police/Fire); continuing education and advancement opportunities and a growing variety of City-sponsored health and wellness opportunities and incentives.

Medical Coverage: For eligible employees and their families, including domestic partners and dependent children age 26 or younger.

Dental Coverage: For eligible employees and their families, including domestic partners and dependent children age 26 or younger.

Vision Coverage: For eligible employees and their eligible dependents.

Paid Leave: City employees are entitled to received paid holidays, sick/vacation leave or personal time off (PTO), depending upon union affiliation and appointment type.

Insurance Plans: Employees are covered by a long-term disability plan. Short-term and expanded long-term disability insurance plans are also available to employees. The State Industrial Insurance Act also covers employees.

Deferred Compensation: Income can be set aside on a pretax basis and invested for supplementation of normal retirement income.

Retirement: All employees of the City, except members of the Police and Fire services, Tacoma Rail and certain project employees, are included in the Tacoma Employees' Retirement System. Information on the Tacoma Employees' Retirement System can be found at or by calling (253) 502-8200.

Other Employment Information

Direct Deposit: Employees are paid on a bi-weekly schedule by direct deposit.

Salary Increases: Based on satisfactory job performance, the City provides for a regular progression of salary increases for most classifications according to the salary schedule.

Union Affiliation: Many job classifications are covered by union security provisions which require union membership, dues, or payment of equivalent service fees.

Note: The provisions of this job announcement do not constitute an expressed or implied contract. Any provision contained herein may be modified and/or revoked without notice.


The Supplemental Questionnaire is part of the examination process; accordingly, it should be completed carefully. It must be submitted with your application. Do not indicate "see resume" or copy unrelated content from your resume when answering these questions. Answer all information requested in each question. Failure to do so may result in rejection of your application. I certify that the information provided is accurate and complete to the best of my knowledge. I understand that any falsification may cancel any terms, conditions, or privileges of employment.

  • Yes

  • No


    This position requires the successful candidate to have a valid Washington State Driver's License at time of appointment, with maintenance afterwards.

    Do you, or will you, have a valid Washington State Driver's License at time of appointment if you are selected for this job?

  • Yes

  • No


    Do you have sufficient training and experience to demonstrate the knowledge and abilities listed in the Sewer Worker class spec Sewer Worker class spec ( ; this includes:

  • Practices, procedures and techniques of storm and sanitary sewer installation, repair, maintenance and cleaning

  • Perform heavy manual labor (construction)

  • Operate various tools and related equipment

  • Operate trucks to perform sewer-related activities

  • Understand and follow oral and written directions

    Please click on the link above to see the full job description.

  • Yes

  • No


    Please check the boxes of all of the below desired qualifications that you possess. Please note, a response of "None of the above" does not disqualify anyone from meeting the qualifications for this position.

  • 1 year of paid work experience performing general construction or repair work which has included excavation, trenching, shoring activities or heavy physical labor

  • High school graduate or equivalent, such as a General Education Degree or homeschool graduate

  • None of the above


    Individuals in the position are exposed to the outdoor environment, noise, fumes, heavy lifting of objects and climbing, confined space entry, adverse weather conditions and exposure to raw sewage, traffic and underground construction hazards. Please check Yes to acknowledge that you are aware of the working conditions.

  • Yes

  • No


    Candidates who are given a Conditional Job Offer must first pass a physical assessment test as a condition to hire. The test will include: 45 lb upright row, 100 lb squats, 45 lb shoulder press, and aerobic bicycling. Please check Yes to acknowledge that you are aware of the assessment and that you must pass this assessment as a condition of employment.

  • Yes

  • No


    Do you have any of the following? Please check all that apply. Please note, a response of "None of the these" does not disqualify anyone from meeting the qualifications for this position. Additional training is offered by the City

  • CDL class A with tanker endorsement

  • Confined space training

  • Flagging experience

  • Forklift experience

  • None of these



    Questions #9-13 are the experience and training test that will be used to establish the eligibility list. These questions will be scored by subject matter experts who will not have access to any of your application materials, and will provide scores based solely upon your answers to the questions. Your answers must stand on their own merit. DO NOT RESPOND WITH "SEE RESUME" in lieu of answering this question, as raters will not have access to your resume or application and this will result in a score of 0 points and you will fail the test. Your score on the experience and training test will ONLY reflect your response to the questions asked.

Please indicate "Yes" that you have read and understand the instructions for questions #9-13.

  • Yes

  • No


    Describe in detail, your experience performing maintenance, repair, and cleaning storm and sewer lines? Please include types of equipment/machinery used, duties performed; also indicate if work was performed independently or as part of a crew. If you do not have experience, respond with N/A,


    Please check the boxes of all of the below listed tools and equipment that you have training on and verifiable work experience operating.

  • CCTV inspection equipment (assist with placement)

  • Curb Saw/Concrete Saw

  • Gas Powered Tamper

  • Shovels, rakes, picks, sledges

  • Power tools, cut-off saws, grinders, chainsaws

  • Forklifts

  • None of the above


    In detail, please describe any experience you have performing manual labor or working in the construction field. If you do not have experience, respond with N/A.


    Please describe your experience working as a member of a team, detail your role and responsibilities on the team.


    Describe your experience working with customers and/or providing services to clients (internal or external). What is your definition/idea of great customer service?


    How did you learn about this job opening?

  • City of Tacoma webpage

  • Internet search

  • Word of mouth

  • From a City of Tacoma employee

  • Professional Organization

  • Association of Washington Cities website

  • Union sharing the information

  • From a community organization

  • Other


    If you selected "other", "professional organization" or "community organization" for question #15, please tell us how you learned about this job opening. Thank you, your information will help us in our recruitment for future job openings.


    If you are a military veteran, did you remember to upload a copy of your DDForm 214, Member 4 copy, for review for Veteran's Preference eligibility?

  • Yes

  • No

    Required Question


City of Tacoma


Human Resources Department 747 Market Street Tacoma, Washington, 98402-3764





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