All employees and volunteers of the Washington State Attorney General’s Office serve a crucial role in the protection of the state, its people and resources, thereby providing an incomparable degree of job satisfaction. The AGO is composed of diverse, collegial and supremely talented legal professionals who are resolute in their commitment to public service and share the common goal of advancing the public interest. For more information about the AGO, we encourage you to review the Office’s Annual Report which can be found HERE and view THIS VIDEO.
The position is located in Olympia, Washington. Olympia offers a diverse, affordable and safe community. Living and working here offers unparalleled opportunities to pursue a rewarding career while living in an historically rich and vibrant area. It is ideally situated between the northwest’s two largest cities (Seattle and Portland) and exploring either is but a short drive away. If exploring Washington State’s natural features is your passion, know that hiking, skiing and sailing opportunities are easily accessible. But you needn’t stray from home for an adventure, as Olympia offers lush parks and trails, walkable neighborhoods, and exceptional dining, shopping and cultural experiences. Families and individuals will benefit from Olympia’s excellent schools, from elementary through college.
The Ecology Division of the Attorney Generals Office seeks an attorney with a passion for public service and a strong interest in environmental law to serve as an Assistant Attorney General. Our Division is located in Olympia and consists of 37 attorneys and professional staff. We value teamwork, diversity, flexibility, and collegiality. This position primarily provides legal support to the Department of Ecology (Ecology).
The attorney who fills this position will be joining a five-member attorney team within the Cleanup Section. Primary areas of practice will involve the state law implementing the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) including the Dangerous Waste regulations, state Model Toxics Control Act (MTCA), and the federal Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA). Typical work will include:
Negotiating agreed orders and consent decrees with potentially liable persons for the cleanup of contaminated sites;
Advising Ecologys Hazardous Waste and Toxics Reduction program as it works to safely manage and reduce hazardous waste in Washington;
Working directly with the Environmental Protection Agency and other federal agencies on Superfund sites under CERCLA;
Handling occasional litigation assignments of varying degrees of complexity before the Pollution Control Hearings Board and state and federal courts (individually or as part of a team) on a variety of environmental laws; and
Providing advice on an array of topics including insurance, property law, the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA), and the Public Records Act.
While the work will vary from month to month, a significant portion will involve providing client advice (written and oral options-based legal advice) on various RCRA and Dangerous Waste regulations, MTCA issues, and negotiating agreements with outside parties. To be successful in this practice, the attorney must be able to work in a team setting and communicate effectively with a wide variety of individuals (engineers, biologists, toxicologists, businesses, local governments, federal government, community organizations, and Tribes).
For examples of some of the recent work of the Cleanup Section, please visit the Department of Ecologys website:
Hazardous Waste Enforcement Actions: https: ecology.wa.gov/About-us/Get-to-know-us/News/2020/June-9-Stericycle-Settlement.
Overseeing Cleanup and Permitting of Dangerous Waste Facilities: https: ecology.wa.gov/Spills-Cleanup/Contamination-cleanup/Cleanup-sites/Dangerous-waste-facility-cleanup
Pasco Landfill Cleanup: https: ecology.wa.gov/About-us/Get-to-know-us/News/2019/Pasco-cleanup
Affordable HousingRelated Cleanup: https: ecology.wa.gov/Spills-Cleanup/Contamination-cleanup/Brownfields/Affordable-housing
Coordinating with the Environmental Protection Agency on cleanup of the Lower Duwamish Waterway: https: ecology.wa.gov/Spills-Cleanup/Contamination-cleanup/Cleanup-sites/Toxic-cleanup-sites/Lower-Duwamish-Waterway
Port Angeles Harbor Natural Resource Damage Assessment: https: ecology.wa.gov/Spills-Cleanup/Contamination-cleanup/Cleanup-sites/Toxic-cleanup-sites/Puget-Sound/Port-Angeles-Harbor/Port-Angeles-Harbor-NRDA
For this position, we seek an attorney with civil litigation experience, especially in handling administrative hearings, motions practice, and discovery. Although a background in science or engineering is not necessary, the successful candidate must have the aptitude to understand technical subject matter and to interact with clients who come from a broad range of science and engineering backgrounds. The successful candidate must also demonstrate superior analytical, writing, interpersonal, and communication skills.
Applicants must have graduated from a law school accredited by the ABA or completed the WSBA’s Rule 6 Law Clerk Program and be licensed to practice law in Washington state. The AGO seeks applicants who are committed to public service as demonstrated by an applicant’s background, talents, attitude, and enthusiasm for public law practice. The AGO greatly encourages, celebrates and values diversity, appreciating that a workforce composed of those from different backgrounds and experiences creates an inclusive environment, strengthens positive relationships with the local community and brings new perspectives and approaches to fulfill its mission of providing excellent, independent and ethical legal services to the State of Washington and protect the rights of its people.
This Assistant Attorney General position is represented by the Association of Assistant Attorneys General (AWAAG) / Washington Federation of State Employees (WFSE) AFSCME Council 28, AFL-CIO. AAG salaries start at $69,396. Ultimately, AAG salaries are set in accordance with the AWAAG CBA. A competitive state benefits package is also offered which includes a choice of medical/dental insurance plans, retirement, and life and basic long-term disability insurance. In addition, there are non-financial benefits that include working in a collaborative and supportive work environment where professional development and work-life balance are highly valued. The health, safety and professional satisfaction of all AGO staff and volunteers is critical to fulfilling the mission of the AGO to provide exceptional legal services. Complementing and fostering this goal, as well as a long-standing commitment to environmental stewardship, is evidenced in the AGO’s environmental policies.
Interested applicants must apply by hitting the “apply” button above. In addition to the on-line application, one must upload, via the system, preferably as PDFs:
- A letter of interest;
- Law school transcript (unofficial copy is acceptable); and
- Writing sample.
If you have questions about this position and/or wish to learn more about it before applying, we encourage and welcome you to contact Carol Carney at 360-586-4612. The deadline to apply is December 13, 2020.
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If you have questions or concerns about this recruitment in light of COVID emergency, please contact Linda Nakamura at Linda.Nakamuraatg.wa.gov.
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Honoring diversity, equity and inclusion means that as an agency, and as individuals, we are committed to ensuring that all employees and volunteers enjoy a respectful, safe and supportive working environment. Only by fostering the inclusion of people from all backgrounds, cultures and attributes, can AGO employees and volunteers achieve their fullest potential and best advance the goals and mission of the AGO.
The AGO is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, national origin, sex, marital status, sexual orientation/gender identity, age, disability, honorably discharged veteran or military status, retaliation or the use of a trained dog guide or service animal by a person with a disability. Persons requiring reasonable accommodation in the application process or requiring information in an alternative format may contact Kalea Muigai at 360-586-7698. Those with a hearing impairment in need of accommodation are encouraged to contact the Washington Relay Service at 1-800-676-3777 or www.washingtonrelay.com.