The work involves responsibility for performing and overseeing a variety of testing procedures in the environmental laboratory of the Onondaga County Department of Water Environment Protection. Under the supervision of the Sanitary Laboratory Supervisor, an employee in this class is responsible for performing laboratory analyses and toxicity testing and for insuring accuracy of the results, as mandated by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. The procedures used must comply with established environmental mandates; however, the incumbent of this position exercises independent judgment in determining which procedures to utilize when not specified in the mandates and establishing the laboratory procedures to accomplish this testing. Supervision is exercised over a small number of Sanitary Technicians. Does related work as required.


Performs and instructs other staff members in the performance of environmental tests of a biochemical nature on a variety of water, wastewater and industrial samples and solid and hazardous waste.

Performs environmental aquatic toxicity studies on effluent discharges into receiving waters as mandated by NYSDEC including design and maintenance of equipment.

Performs routine testing on water and domestic/industrial wastewater such as Total Coliform, Fecal Coliform, Fecal Strep, Standard Plate Count, Protozoan Identification, Biochemical Oxygen Demand and Bacterial Identification.

Performs routine laboratory functions such as reagent preparation, weighing of chemicals and titrations.

Researches new techniques of aquatic testing.

Maintains laboratory equipment such as microscopes, analytical balances, incubators, water baths, autoclaves, etc. and orders equipment and supplies.

Oversees and maintains quality control records and procedures of routine analyses including periodic evaluation samples from the NYS Reference Laboratory to provide legal documentation of results and satisfy inspection/certification requirements for environmental laboratories as mandated by NYSDEC.

Trains, supervises and checks the accuracy of analyses performed by subordinate laboratory personnel involved with biochemical analyses.

Prepares reports and correspondence.


Good knowledge of the principles and practices of biochemistry as it relates to environmental analyses and aquatic toxicity.

Some knowledge of the principles and practices of instrumental analysis as applied to environmental parameters.

Skill in the use of laboratory equipment and in the application of laboratory and research practices and techniques to instrument analysis.

Ability to apply scientific procedures, methodology and formulas to work assignments.

Ability to analyze laboratory results.

Ability to supervise employees.

Ability to instruct employees in various laboratory analysis procedures.

Ability to report both orally and in writing findings and conclusions of analytical results.


A. Gradation from a regionally accredited college or university or one accredited by the New York State Board of Regents to grant degrees with a baccalaureate degree in chemistry, biochemistry or biology; or,

B. Four (4) years of professional level work experience, or its part time equivalent, in performing environmental/biochemical analyses in a certified water/wastewater environmental laboratory; or,

C. An equivalent combination of training and experience as defined by the limits of (A) and (B).

NOTE: Whether qualifying under (A), (B) or (C) of the minimum qualifications, candidates must have successfully completed six (6) credit hours of microbiology to be considered qualifying candidates for this position.

12/02 Revised