Senior Plans Examiner

  • City of Murrieta, CA
  • Murrieta, California
  • May 03, 2019
Full Time Code Enforcement and Inspections
  • Salary: $67,518.46 - $82,069.06 Annually

Job Description

Description and Essential Functions



Under general direction, provides technical and functional supervision to lower-level staff and performs advanced and highly complex professional engineering work in checking plans, calculations, specifications, technical reports, and other submittal documents for compliance with Federal, State, and local building codes, ordinances, and regulations; receives and checks plans and designs for complex structures, new and remodeled commercial, industrial, and residential buildings to ensure compliance; assists inspectors, contractors, design professionals and the public regarding construction requirements; provides expert technical and professional assistance to the Building Official; and performs related work as required.

Receives general direction from the Building Official. Exercises technical and functional direction over and provides training and guidance to lower-level staff.

This is the advanced-level classification in the Plans Examiner series responsible for performing the most complex work assigned to the series. Incumbents regularly work on tasks which are varied and complex, requiring considerable discretion and independent judgment. Positions in the classification rely on experience and judgment to perform advanced and highly complex structural plan checks, interpret policies and procedures relating to building and construction activities and enforce building codes. Assignments are given with general guidelines and incumbents are responsible for establishing objectives, timelines and methods to deliver services. Work is typically reviewed upon completion for soundness, appropriateness, and conformity to policy and requirements. This class is distinguished from the Building Official in that the latter has management responsibility for all Building and Safety division programs, functions, and activities.

Management reserves the right to add, modify, change, or rescind the work assignments of different positions and to make reasonable accommodations where appropriate so that qualified employees can perform the essential functions of the job.
  • Monitors activities of the plan checking work unit; recommends improvements and modifications and prepares various reports on activities and projects; recommends and assists in the implementation of goals and objectives; implements policies and procedures.
  • Oversees and performs difficult structural analysis and reviews plan check submittal documents for permit applications for complex construction, alteration, or repair of residential, commercial, and industrial buildings for compliance with the City, State, and Federal codes and regulations.
  • Reviews and evaluates construction documents including plans, drawings, blueprints, specifications, engineering calculations, and energy calculations for compliance; makes judgments as to whether structural designs or plans conform to applicable codes.
  • Confers with architects, engineers, contractors, homeowners and others relative to construction or building projects; coordinates plan examining activities with City departments and other agencies; confers and corresponds with other professional personnel in connection with building code interpretation and application.
  • Assists building inspectors in the field where engineering problems are encountered; interprets building construction plans; advises on engineering matters and technical judgments.
  • Responds to public inquiries over the telephone or at the counter concerning questions regarding permit processing, building, or other construction-related questions; performs plan reviews at the customer service counter for the general public; assists applicants in achieving compliance with various codes and regulations; resolves disputes.
  • Provides technical direction to less experienced staff in terms of city policies, procedures, rules, and regulations; assists front counter technicians in the review of structural aspects and other applicable elements of over the counter permitting; ensures uniform application of the appropriate codes, rules and regulations.
  • Attends Development Review Committee meetings as a representative of the Building Department to discuss exhibits regarding the Planning Department's entitlement process; reviews exhibits for completeness and compliance with mandated rules, regulations and codes; composes incomplete comments or conditions of approval and forwards to the Planning Department for project status updating and/or approval for entitlement processing; attends applicant meetings to discuss development case reviews and respond to questions.
  • Reviews engineered precise grading plans for on-site accessibility components functional layout, detailing and correlation with architectural site plans; composes review comments and enters into software system; coordinates plan review process and interacts with design professionals until clearances/approvals are obtained.
  • Reviews engineered civil design plans for multi-building and multi-parcel on-site, underground "wet" utilities, e.g. potable water and domestic sewer; composes review comments and enters into software system; coordinates plan review process and interacts with design professionals until approvals are obtained and permits are issued.
  • Prepares plan review correspondence to permit applicants; documents plan deficiencies, required corrections, and engineering details.
  • Coordinates project approvals, building permits, and plan reviews with staff, other departments, and outside agencies.
  • Assists in fee structuring for assigned activities and projects; prepares detailed cost estimates with appropriate justifications; maintains a variety of records and prepares routine plan check reports.
  • Attends a variety of meetings to review and discuss plans, documents, and code requirements; performs field reviews as necessary.
  • Prepares reports and correspondence pertaining to structural engineering problems and building code enforcement; maintains records of plan checking activities.
  • Observes and complies with all City and mandated safety rules, regulations, and protocols.
  • Performs related duties as required.

Minimum Qualifications

Any combination of training and experience that would provide the required knowledge, skills, and abilities is qualifying. A typical way to obtain the required qualifications would be:
  • High School Diploma or equivalent (GED), supplemented by college-level coursework in civil or structural engineering, architecture, or a related field.
  • Five (5) years of increasingly responsible experience in plan checking of complex commercial or industrial structures and/or the enforcement of building codes for a public agency.

  • Possession of or ability to obtain and maintain a valid California Driver's License.
  • Certification as a Plans Examiner from the International Conference of Building Officials or the International Code Council.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities / Physical Demands and Environmental Conditions

  • Principles of providing functional direction and training.
  • Basic principles and practices of budget development, administration, and accountability.
  • Principles, practices and methods of structural and building plan review.
  • Practices for documenting plan checking procedures and correcting discrepancies.
  • Fundamental principles, techniques, policies, and procedures of civil engineering.
  • Construction methods, materials, tools, and equipment used for complex residential, commercial, and industrial construction, and principles of structural engineering.
  • Methods, materials, tools and safety practices of the building, plumbing, and electrical trades.
  • Applicable Federal, State, and local laws, rules, regulations, ordinances, and organizational policies and procedures relevant to assigned area of responsibility, including building, plumbing, electrical, mechanical, life safety, energy, and related codes.
  • Legal processes and considerations involved in prosecuting violations of the building codes and ordinances.
  • Modern equipment and communication tools used for business functions and program, project, and task coordination, including computers and software programs relevant to work performed.
  • The structure and content of the English language, including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Principles and techniques for working with groups and fostering effective team interaction to ensure teamwork is conducted smoothly.
  • Techniques for effectively representing the City in contacts with governmental agencies, community groups, various business, professional, educational and regulatory organizations, and with property owners, developers, contractors, and the public.
  • Techniques for providing a high level of customer service by effectively dealing with the public, vendors, contractors, and City staff.
  • City and mandated safety rules, regulations, and protocols.

  • Plan, organize, and coordinate the work of assigned staff.
  • Effectively provide staff leadership and work direction.
  • Assist in developing and implementing goals, objectives, practices, policies, procedures, and work standards.
  • Read and interpret building plans, specifications, and codes.
  • Examine and correct building plans, calculations and specifications in a rapid, uniform and accurate manner.
  • Analyze, evaluate and solve or recommend effective solutions to building and code problems.
  • Understand, interpret, and apply all pertinent laws, codes, regulations, policies and procedures, and standards relevant to work performed.
  • Evaluate legal violations and take appropriate action.
  • Make structural calculations necessary to determine the adherence of structural plans to code requirements.
  • Prepare clear and concise reports, correspondence, and other written materials.
  • Establish and maintain accurate logs, records, and basic written records of work performed.
  • Make sound, independent decisions within established policy and procedural guidelines.
  • Independently organize work, set priorities, meet critical deadlines, and follow-up on assignments.
  • Effectively use computer systems, software applications relevant to work performed, and modern business equipment to perform a variety of work tasks.
  • Effectively represent the department and the City in meetings with governmental agencies; community groups; various business, professional, and regulatory organizations; and in meetings with individuals.
  • Communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing, using appropriate English grammar and syntax.
  • Use tact, initiative, prudence, and independent judgment within general policy, procedural, and legal guidelines.
  • Establish, maintain, and foster positive and effective working relationships with those contacted in the course of work.

When assigned to an office environment, must possess mobility to work in a standard office setting and use standard office equipment, including a computer; vision to read printed materials and a computer screen; and hearing and speech to communicate in person and over the telephone; ability to stand and walk between work areas may be required. Finger dexterity is needed to access, enter, and retrieve data using a computer keyboard or calculator and to operate standard office equipment. Positions in this classification occasionally bend, stoop, kneel, reach, push, and pull drawers open and closed to retrieve and file information.

When assigned to field inspection, must possess mobility to work in changing site conditions; possess the strength, stamina, and mobility to perform light to medium physical work; to sit, stand, and walk on level, uneven, or slippery surfaces; to reach, twist, turn, kneel, and bend, to climb and descend ladders; and to operate a motor vehicle and visit various City sites; vision to inspect site conditions and work in progress. The job involves fieldwork requiring frequent walking in operational areas to identify problems or hazards, with exposure to hazardous materials in some site locations. Employees must possess the ability to lift, carry, push, and pull materials and objects averaging a weight of 40 pounds, or heavier weights, in all cases with the use of proper equipment and/or assistance from other staff.

Employees work in an office environment with moderate noise levels, controlled temperature conditions, and no direct exposure to hazardous physical substances. Employees also work in the field and are exposed to loud noise levels, cold and hot temperatures, inclement weather conditions, road hazards, vibration, confining workspace, chemicals, mechanical and/or electrical hazards, and hazardous physical substances and fumes. Employees may interact with upset staff and/or public and private representatives in interpreting and enforcing departmental policies and procedures.

Supplemental Information

A City application form must be submitted online. Applicants can apply online at .

Candidates must clearly demonstrate through their application materials that they meet the employment standards outlined above. All properly completed applications will be reviewed, and the most appropriately qualified individuals will be invited to continue in the selection process. Examinations for the position may consist of any combination of appraisal interview, performance test and writing exercise to evaluate the applicant's skill, training, and experience for the position. Successful applicants will be placed on an eligibility list. The City may also merge lists. The selected candidate(s) must successfully complete pre-employment clearances which may include a physical, drug screen, and Live Scan background screening.

The City of Murrieta, located in southwest Riverside County, was incorporated under the general laws of the State of California on July 1, 1991, and currently supports a population of approximately 114,000 residents. While offering affordable housing and high quality schools, the City represents a blend of dynamic growth amid the traditional values of a historic rural community dating back to the 1890's. Every resident and employee of the City has the opportunity to be an integral part in shaping the Murrieta of today, and, more important, the Murrieta of tomorrow.
Closing Date/Time: Continuous