Public Works Director/City Engineer

In by Katy Fallon

  • De Soto, KS
  • This position has been filled

Website City of De Soto


Position Title: Public Works Director/City Engineer
Department: Public Works
Reports To: City Administrator
FLSA: Non- Exempt
Starting Pay Range:  $52.88/hour ($110,000/year) – $62.50/hour ($130,000/year)
Retirement: KPERS

Position Summary: This is a technical and executive supervisory position that performs complex City engineering as well as directs and oversees the operation and maintenance of all Public Works divisions and public utilities (Streets, Water and Wastewater Treatment, and related subdivisions). This position exercises broad discretion in determining work processes, procedures, schedules, and the development of departmental operating policies and procedures consistent with City, State and Federal laws, rules, and policies. This position is part of the City’s management team and should possess a strong technical aptitude, as well as have excellent supervisory, oral, and written communication, public relation, and organizational skills.


(Duties listed below do not include all tasks which may be performed.)

  • Manages and oversees the operation, repair, and maintenance of all city streets, sidewalks, transportation systems, signs, vehicles, water, and sewer systems.
  • Assumes full management responsibility for all Public Works Department services and activities within Public Works including planning, directing, assigning, reviewing and coordinating the operations and maintenance of the various divisions; ensures compliance with all state and federal regulations.
  • Attends public meetings when necessary
  • Approves pay requests and change orders
  • Serves as City’s Emergency Management Officer
  • Develops, implements, and oversees safety procedures and practices
  • Maintains proper records and documents for the Public Works Department and projects.
  • Develops long-term strategy in consultation with City Administrator; develops programs, budget/CIP submittals, and short and long-term scheduling.
  • Assesses and monitors the City’s infrastructure to provide adequate levels of public service both for existing systems/networks and extensions/developments.
  • Formulates, executes and reviews/manages budgets related to personnel, administration, capital improvements, and projects.
  • Provides analysis, recommendations, and implementation of policies and procedures; recommends and presents programs to the City Council, MARC, and De Soto Chamber of Commerce
  • Consults and advises the City Administrator, City Council, and other concerned individuals on Public Works operations, activities, projects, and programs.
  • Confers with consultants, contractors, design firms, City staff, and others on various department projects; recommends changes to ensure compliance; coordinates inspections activities, change orders, funding, etc.
  • Resolves citizen concerns about departmental-related projects or activities.
  • Coordinates with Chief Building Official, City Planner, and City Administrator to review plans and specifications for construction projects and ensure compliance with City requirements.
  • Manages the personnel activities of the department and each division including the staffing, selection, training, utilization, and performance review of subordinates.
  • Establishes and approves performance standards and evaluations; reviews internal complaints and grievances; administers and/or approves counseling and disciplinary actions.
  • Assists with applying for and monitoring intergovernmental funding programs.
  • Assists with preparing grant applications, monitors grants received, assures grant requirement compliance, monitors wage compliance, and other grant-related requirements.
  • Serves as a liaison for the City with outside organizations and agencies.
  • Attends and participates in professional group meetings; stay abreast of new trends and innovations in the field of public works.


Works under the general guidance and direction of the City Administrator


Exercises supervision over all professional, managerial, technical, clerical, and maintenance staff of the Public Works divisions either directly or through division supervisors. Directly supervises the Public Works Operations Manager, Street & Fleet Foreman, and Water Superintendent.



  • The principles and practices of Civil Engineering as well as construction and maintenance methods, materials, and equipment as employed in Municipal Public Works.
  • Knowledge of and experience in municipal procedures relating to finance, personnel, purchasing, office operations, risk management and public relations
  • The laws and regulations related to various public works and engineering activities, with a strong emphasis on wastewater and stormwater operations.


  • The operation of listed tools and equipment: basic GIS, CAD, MS Office products and applicable engineering programs.
  • Public relations and public speaking.


  • Planning, administering, and managing the work of all Public Works functions
  • Establishing and maintaining effective working relationships with the department and other City personnel.
  • Dealing courteously and tactfully with consultants, contractors, the public, and other interested parties.
  • Effectively presenting and communicating information, both verbally and in writing, to individuals or groups including the governing body.


Personal computer including word processing, spreadsheet, database and GIS software; copier; scanner; motor vehicle; phone; and mobile radio.

Please email questions to Brandon Mills, Assistant City Administrator, at


MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS – Education and Experience – Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university in civil engineering or related field. – Seven to ten years of progressively responsible experience in the practice of engineering and public works administration including responsibility for planning and directing major aspects of the public works operation. – Registered Professional Engineer with the State of Kansas or in a state having reciprocity with the State of Kansas; ability to obtain license within 120 days of hire. – Must possess a valid driver’s license at time of application (and maintain for the duration of employment) and meet insurability standards under fleet insurance policy. DESIRABLE QUALIFICATIONS – 10+ years of experience in municipal public works management – Advanced GIS/CAD skills/knowledge – Previous experience with environmental compliance

Miscellaneous Information

PHYSICAL DEMANDS The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. Work is performed mostly in office settings. Some outdoor work is required in the inspection of various land use developments, construction sites, or public works facilities and managing snow and ice operations. Hand-eye coordination is necessary to operate various pieces of office equipment. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is occasionally required to stand; walk; handle, feel, or operate objects, tools, or controls; and reach with hands and arms. The employee is occasionally required to sit; climb or balance; stoop, kneel, crouch, or crawl; talk and hear. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 50 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close and distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, and the ability to adjust focus. WORK ENVIRONMENT The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. While performing the duties of this job, the employee occasionally works in outside weather conditions. The employee occasionally works near moving mechanical parts and in high, precarious places and is occasionally exposed to wet and/or humid conditions, fumes or airborne particles, toxic or caustic chemicals, risk of electrical shock, and vibration. The noise level in the work environment can be quiet in the office to noisy in the field. SELECTION GUIDELINES Formal application review of qualifications/education and experiences; testing, which may include written and/or practical examination, oral interview, oral presentation, job-related testing, final selection, reference check, and post-offer medical examination. The duties listed above are intended only as illustrations of the various types of work that may be performed. 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. The position description does not constitute an employment agreement between the employer and employee and is subject to change by the employer as the needs of the employer and requirements of the job change.