Environmental Protection Agency – Regional Counsel

About The Company
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s mission is to protect human health and the environment. EPA’s Pacific Southwest (Region 9) implements and enforces federal environmental laws in Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, the Pacific Islands, and 148 tribal nations.

Job Description/Duties
The Regional Counsel (RC) provides senior leadership to the Office of Regional Counsel (ORC). The RC serves as principal legal adviser to the Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance (OECA), the Office of General Counsel (OGC), the Regional Administrator, and Regional program managers and, as such, has responsibility for providing legal advice and assistance and policy recommendations on counseling and enforcement matters involving the whole range of environmental issues handled by the EPA.

The RC reports to both the Assistant Administrator (AA) for OECA and the General Counsel for technical and programmatic oversight and for work prioritization. The activities of the ORC are of major importance within the Region and due to the potentially precedential effects thereof, may be of nationwide importance. These activities may have a substantial influence on the protection and enhancement of the Nation’s environment.

The following duties and responsibilities are to be carried out either by the RC personally or through appropriate staff attorneys:

Reviewing and resolving the legal questions which arise under all regulations, lawsuits, enforcement actions, executive orders, and other administrative actions involving major federal statutes affecting the Agency programs.
Providing general legal advice and policy recommendations regarding Regional programs, operations, and activities.
Providing legal advice and policy recommendations on civil judicial and administrative enforcement matters arising under EPA enforcement programs.
Providing legal advice and policy recommendations to managers of Agency financial assistance programs.
Drafting and reviewing final Agency determinations, proposed and final regulations, notices, and such other documents to be published in the Federal Register.
Supervising and coordinating the Region’s participation in defensive and enforcement litigation.
Representing the Region in its dealings with outside parties.
Overseeing the Region’s compliance with the Freedom of Information Act, regulations, policies, and Executive Orders.
Representing the Region as counsel in personnel actions brought against the Agency.
Serving as the hearing officer in hearing and deciding matters brought before the Agency.
Communicating and coordinating with the legal representatives of state agencies administering EPA programs within the Region.
Serving as a liaison between the Region and OECA and OGC.
As tasked by the General Counsel or the AA for OECA, serving as a national legal expert in one or more major subject matter areas.
Directing and managing the activities, staff, and resources assigned to the Office.
Serving as the Region’s Deputy Ethics Official.
As an Agency senior leader, the incumbent will view policy and personnel decisions through both an Environmental Justice (EJ) and Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) lens to support the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people with respect to the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, grants, and policies regardless of race, color, national origin, or income. This includes consideration of the effect of their work on communities with environmental justice concerns. Engagement with impacted communities in decisions, integrating equity and justice and compliance with all civil rights requirements, will be taken into policy considerations and program implementation to ensure that EPA achieves its mission for all communities.

Job Criteria
The work of this position is classified in the General Attorney, 0905 series. Applicants must have a LL.B or J.D. degree from an accredited law school; must be admitted to practice before the highest court of a State, U. S. territory, the District of Columbia, or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico; and must maintain active status as a member of the bar of one of these jurisdictions. The incumbent must have significant experience in providing legal advice and counsel at EPA; other federal, state, or local agencies; or in private practice.

All applicants must have one year of specialized experience at a level close to the work of this job that demonstrates the particular knowledge, skills, and abilities required to successfully perform in this role. Typically this experience can be found in work within this field or a field that is closely related.

As a basic requirement for entry into the Senior Executive Service, applicants must also provide evidence of progressively responsible leadership experience that is indicative of senior level management capability and directly related to the skills and abilities outlined under the Executive Core Qualifications and Technical Qualifications listed below.

A. Executive Core Qualifications (ECQs) – Mandatory for competitive applicants – Failure to address these factors individually within a limit of ten (10) pages total will result in your application being disqualified, unless you are a noncompetitive eligible applicant.

ECQ 1 – LEADING CHANGE. Involves the ability to bring about strategic change, both within and outside the organization, to meet organizational goals. Inherent to this ECQ is the ability to establish an organizational vision and to implement it in a continuously changing environment.
ECQ 2 – LEADING PEOPLE. Involves the ability to lead people toward meeting the organization’s vision, mission, and goals. Inherent to this ECQ is the ability to provide an inclusive workplace that fosters the development of others, facilitates cooperation and teamwork, and supports constructive resolution of conflicts.
ECQ 3 – RESULTS DRIVEN. Involves the ability to meet organizational goals and customer expectations. Inherent to this ECQ is the ability to make decisions that produce high-quality results by applying technical knowledge, analyzing problems, and calculating risks.
ECQ 4 – BUSINESS ACUMEN. Involves the ability to manage human, financial, and information resources strategically.
ECQ 5 – BUILDING COALITIONS. Involves the ability to build coalitions internally and with other Federal agencies, State and local governments, nonprofit and private sector organizations, foreign governments, or international organizations to achieve common goals.

Your responses should be clear and concise and show a level of accomplishment and a degree of responsibility. Leadership competencies for each ECQ can be found in OPM’s Guide to SES Qualifications.

B. Technical Qualifications (TQs) – Mandatory for all applicants – Failure to address these factors individually within a limit of two (2) pages per factor will result in your application being disqualified.

TQ 1 – Demonstrated experience leading complex counseling, enforcement, and litigation matters involving federal environmental protection laws, regulations, and/or programs.

TQ 2 – Demonstrated experience directing the work of attorneys in performing complex, multi-faceted legal casework.

Salary Range/Hourly Rate
$191,901 – $221,900 per year

Other Benefits and Perks
A career with the U.S. government provides employees with a comprehensive benefits package. As a federal employee, you and your family will have access to a range of benefits that are designed to make your federal career very rewarding. https://www.usajobs.gov/Help/working-in-government/benefits/

Join EPA in protecting human health and the environment and enjoy many work life quality options! Working for the EPA offers you a comprehensive benefits package that includes, in part, 26 days of paid vacation, sick leave, holidays, life insurance, health benefits, and participation in the Federal Employees Retirement System. To learn more about us, visit Life and Careers at EPA. https://www.epa.gov/careers/

PUBLIC SERVICE LOAN FORGIVENESS (PSLF): As a federal employee, you may be eligible for student loan forgiveness under the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program. The PSLF program forgives the remaining balance on federal Direct Loans after you have made 120 qualifying payments while working full-time for a qualifying employer, including EPA. Learn more: pslf.gov

This position has portable work. If selected for this position, you may be authorized to telework after meeting eligibility requirements if approved by the supervisor/manager. Telework is available based on agency policy.

Review our benefits: https://www.epa.gov/careers/salaries-and-benefits

Job Category: Environmental Law
Job Type: Full Time
Job Location: San Francisco