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Survey Specialist

Salary: $27.23-$33.24 hourly / $4,736-$5,782 monthly / Range: 5958

DEFINITION: Under direction, reviews survey maps and documents for technical correctness and compliance with federal, state, and local regulations; performs the most technically complex paraprofessional office surveying duties; and performs other duties as required.

DISTINGUISHING CHARACTERISTICS: Survey Specialist is an advanced journey-level classification and is distinguished from the class of Engineering Technician, Specialist by its sole assignment of surveying duties. Survey Specialist reports to a Deputy County Surveyor classification that is assigned responsible charge for office survey work.

Survey Specialist is distinguished from Survey Party Chief by the latter's primary assignment to coordinate the activities of a field survey party. Survey Specialist and Survey Party Chief both possess general knowledge of land surveying principles and practices. However, Survey Specialist is expected to become proficient in interpreting and applying the Subdivision Map Act, while Survey Party Chief need only possess working knowledge of the Subdivision Map Act. Conversely, Survey Party Chief possesses thorough knowledge of field surveying practices while Survey Specialist possesses working knowledge of such practices.


1. Using computer and calculator programs and mapping software, performs boundary analysis, research, and mathematical checking of parcel maps, records of survey, tract maps, and other maps and projects for technical correctness and compliance with applicable federal, state, and local laws, regulations, and guidelines and office policies and procedures.
2. Answers a variety of complex questions and provides information to private engineers, surveyors, developers, other County departments, and the general public regarding items such as map check outcomes; property ownership and boundaries; monumentation and easement location; federal, state, and local surveying laws, rules, and regulations; and County ordinances, policies, and procedures.
3. Researches existing recorded information, including record maps, plans, deeds, easements, and right-of-way documents; prepares legal descriptions, records of surveys, and corner records; and photocopies recorded maps and documents for customers using blueprint photocopier or other reproduction equipment.
4. Constructs countywide Geographic Information Systems (GIS) base map by: coordinating the GIS activities of various County departments and divisions and community members, including local schools, vendors, and surveyors; organizing discussions and presentations of GIS hardware, software, and applications; automating related office functions; and assigning, prioritizing, reviewing, and evaluating the work of technicians and/or interns.
5. Reviews applications for certificates of compliance for sufficiency and completeness and survey content for validity and technical correctness; and prepares reports for technical concurrence by the County Surveyor and legal review by County Counsel.
6. Files and indexes maps and record information using personal computers and database software; and supervises interns performing index-related data entry.
7. Provides Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO) with special maps, legal descriptions, and reports for properties to be annexed or detached from special districts or cities and ensures projects' compliance with applicable state and regulatory agencies and laws.
8. Writes technical manuals for use by department employees, land surveyors, and engineers to ensure compliance with applicable state laws, local ordinances, and office policies; prepares Board letters for approval of tracts, monument deposit amounts, and acceptance or rejection of easements; and writes and maintains database for monument identification.
9. May perform the duties of Survey Party Chief or other related field duties as a temporary assignment in order to satisfy the training/experience requirement for the Professional Land Surveyor's License.


1. Four years of paraprofessional civil engineering experience, including at least one year of journey-level surveying experience; or,
2. one year of experience performing surveying duties as an Engineering Technician II with the County of Santa Barbara; or,
3. four years of journey-level, paraprofessional engineering experience, plus certification as a Land Surveyor-In-Training (LSIT); or,
4. equivalent combination of training, education, and experience that would provide the required knowledge and abilities.

Additional Qualifications: Appointees must obtain Land Surveyor-In-Training Certification (LSIT) within one year of appointment. Possession of a California Class C Driver's License may be required for some positions in this classification.

Desirable Qualifications: Knowledge of federal Bureau of Land Management's Manual of Surveying Instructions, the state Subdivision Map Act, the Professional Land Surveyors Act, and County subdivision ordinances.

Knowledge of principles and practices of land surveying, including boundary determination, preparation of legal descriptions, and Geographic Information Systems; the Professional Land Surveyors Act; algebra, geometry, and trigonometry as used in field survey analysis; methods and standards of technical report writing; standard English and grammar usage; and computer-assisted surveying applications.

Ability to: work independently; read and interpret maps, title reports, and legal descriptions as well as laws, rules, and regulations; explain technical concepts to others; review and adjust survey data; make mathematical computations such as distances, traverses, and elevations; analyze data; operate engineering calculators and personal computers; perform difficult algebraic, geometric, trigonometric, and precise engineering calculations; communicate effectively orally and in writing; prepare technical reports; assign, prioritize, schedule, and delegate work; train and evaluate the performance of staff; and establish and maintain cooperative working relationships with County staff, engineers, developers, contractors, and the general public.

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