Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration Utility Systems Repairer Operator in Big Spring, Texas

Job Overview

Job Overview

About the Agency


OUR MISSION:** To fulfill President Lincoln's promise: "To care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan" - by serving and honoring the men and women who are America's Veterans. How would you like to become a part of a team providing compassionate care to Veterans?

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) needs employees who possess the energy, compassion, and commitment to serve those who served our Country. Whatever the job title, every position in VA will give you a chance to make a meaningful and personal contribution to the lives of truly special and deserving people - our Veterans. VA professionals feel good about their careers and their ability to balance work and home life. VA offers generous paid time off and a variety of predictable and flexible scheduling opportunities. Working for VA is one of the most emotionally satisfying and professionally rewarding ways to dedicate the best within you to your Country's service. If you are transitioning from the military or a Veteran already, we invite you to explore the benefits of continuing your career at the VA. The VA is committed to hiring Veterans.

The VA is much more than just another employer. It is an honorable, open and welcoming community of those who care. Gratitude is our motivation and service is our mission.

The VA has adopted Core Values and Characteristics that apply universally across the Department. The five Core Values define "who we are," our culture, and how we care for Veterans, their families and other beneficiaries. The Values are Integrity, Commitment, Advocacy, Respect and Excellence ("I CARE"). America's Veterans need you!


These Utility Systems Operator positions are in the Engineering Service at the Big Spring, TX VA Medical Center in located in Big Spring, TX. Duties include but may not be limited to the following:

  • Operating/repairing the high pressure power boiler plant, chiller plant, HVAC graphic control system, and water treatment plant.
  • Boiler Plant Work is performed in a high pressure boiler plant with a capacity of 20,700 pounds of steam per hour. The plant has three boilers (200 HP) fired by natural gas and #2 fuel oil and auxiliary equipment to produce steam for heating buildings, for use in the operations of food preparation, water heating, and instrument sterilization.
  • You will be responsible for operating the boiler plant to produce and control the amount of steam to meet varying demands. Incumbent must maintain continuous observation of the instruments, controls, and measuring devices to determine how much steam is being produced and determining whether it meets or exceeds demand, calculates fuel efficiency by determining the amount of fuel being used and quantity of steam being produced. Incumbent monitors boiler stack gases, according
  • Air Conditioninq Plant Work is performed in a central air conditioning plant consisting of two each 350 ton centrifugal chillers, two single cell cooling towers rated at 750 gallons per minute, a graphic control panel, air compressor, and a heat exchanger rated at 600,000 pounds per hour.
  • You will be responsible for starting, stopping, and adjusting the chillers using humidity, air temperature, building temperature, building exhaust temperature, primary discharge air temperature, and weather forecast Incumbent will disassemble and clean chiller tubes, repair flow switches, victolic couplings and thermometer wells. You will not repair any part of the chillers that could cause CFC's to be released to the atmosphere unless incumbent has a EPA approved certification for this type of equipment. Incumbent will operate, treat and repair the cooling towers. Flow controls, float, filters, chemical Injection, and conductivity meters will be adjusted and maintained.
  • Building Management Computer:The Medical center IIVAC, refrigeration, and grounds irrigation system is monitored and controlled from a central work station located in the boiler plant office.
  • Systems Maintenance:You will have full responsibility for maintenance and repair of power boilers and related equipment, water treatment plant, and RO filter plant some of the systems that you will repair or replace are: electronic modulating motor and air damper for power boiler burners rheostats, flame safeguard and programming control, ultraviolet flame scanners, mercury switches and electronic fuel valves. Work Schedule:Full-Time, Utility System Operators are run on a seven-day, three-shift plan. May be assigned to a specific shift or alternate, working on all three shifts, including weekends and holidays.

Recruitment & Relocation Incentives: Not authorized

Supervisory Status


Travel Required
  • Not Required
Relocation Authorized
  • No
Who May Apply
This job is open to…

United States Citizens

Questions? This job is open to 1 group.

Job Requirements

Job Requirements
Key Requirements
  • Must be a U.S. citizen
  • Subject to a background/security investigation
  • Designated and/or random drug testing may be required
  • Selective Service Registration is required for males born after 12/31/1959
  • May be required to serve a probationary period
  • Pre-employment physical may be required

Applicants will be rated in accordance with the OPM Qualification Standard Handbook X-118C ( For this position, the job element method is used to match what you, the applicant, can do against what the work calls for. Your knowledge, skills and abilities will be compared to the knowledge, skills and abilities (called job elements) needed for success. Your qualifications will first be evaluated against the prescribed screen out element (WG-2 and higher only; screen-outs are not applicable to WG-1). Applicants who appear to meet the screen out element are considered for further rating; those who do not are rated ineligible and are eliminated from consideration. The potential eligibles are rated against the remainder of the job elements. While a specific length of training and experience is not required, your responses to the questionnaire must be supported by detailed descriptions of your experience on your resume.

You will be rated on the following Job Elements as part of the assessment questionnaire for this position:

  • Equipment Assembly, Installation, Repair
  • Interpret Instructions, Specifications (other than blueprint reading)
  • Operation of Equipment/Machinery
  • Use and Maintain Tools and Equipment
  • Without more than normal supervision

Required Experience: Ability to do the work of the position without more than normal supervision. Utilizing a broad knowledge of operations and repair of power boiler plant, chiller plant, and water treatment plant; starting and stopping and adjusting power boilers, capable of bringing a boiler on line from a cold start and cutting in to the system, to maintain high steam pressure to supply medical center demand; Operating water treatment equipment such as feed-water deaerating heater, demineralizing reverse osmosis units, and water softeners and running tests of boiler and chiller water to determine the acidity, causticity, alkalinity, dissolved solids, and hardness, by using prescribed chemical reagents, color slides, and other standards; performing maintenance and repair of power boilers and related equipment, water treatment plant, and RO filter plant and repair or replace of electronic modulating motor and air damper for power boiler burners rheostats, flame safeguard and programming control, ultraviolet flame scanners, mercury switches and electronic fuel valves.

IMPORTANT: A full year of work is considered to be 35-40 hours of work per week. All experience listed on your resume must include the month and year start/end dates. Part-time experience will be credited on the basis of time actually spent in appropriate activities. Applicants wishing to receive credit for such experience must indicate clearly the nature of their duties and responsibilities in each position and the number of hours a week spent in such employment.

Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religious; spiritual; community; student; social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.

PHYSICAL EFFORT AND WORK CONDITIONS:You must be able to climb stairways and ladders, lift heavy objects, crawl and stoop in close spaces. You will be subject to abnormal heat, noise, cold, toxic amounts of gas, and handling of poisonous chemicals. Mental application is a necessity due to the complexity of plant equipment and system being monitored, and being alert at all times for emergencies and for equipment malfunctions

Security Clearance

Not Applicable

Additional Information

Additional Information
What To Expect Next

Once your online application is submitted you will receive a confirmation notification by email. After the vacancy announcement closes, we will review applications per Category Rating procedures to ensure qualification and eligibility requirements are met. After the review is complete, a referral certificate(s) is issued and applicants will be notified of their status by email. Referred applicants will be notified as such and may be contacted directly by the hiring office for an interview. All referred applicants receive a final notification once a selection decision has been made.

You may check the status of your application at any time by logging into your USA Jobs account and clicking on Applications. Information regarding your application status can be found in the USAJobs Help Center.


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Other Information

Selected applicants may be required to complete an online onboarding process.

Receiving Service Credit for Earning Annual (Vacation) Leave:Federal Employees earn annual leave at a rate (4, 6 or 8 hours per pay period) which is based on the number of years they have served as a Federal employee. VA may offer newly-appointed Federal employee's credit for their job-related non-federal experience or active duty uniformed military service. This credited service can be used in determining the rate at which they earn annual leave. Such credit must be requested and approved prior to the appointment date and is not guaranteed.

Special Employment Consideration: VA encourages persons with disabilities to apply, including those eligible for hiring under 5 CFR 213.3102(u), Schedule A, Appointment of persons with disabilities (i.e., intellectual disabilities, severe physical disabilities, or psychiatric disabilities), and/or disabled veterans with a compensable service-connected disability of 30% or more. For more information on how to apply using this appointment authority via the Selective Placement Coordinator within the office, contact the facility Human Resources Department at (432) 263-7361.

It is the policy of the VA to not deny employment to those that have faced financial hardships or periods of unemployment.

Veterans and Transitioning Service Members: Please visit the VA for Vets site for career-search tools for Veterans seeking employment at VA, career development services for our existing Veterans, and coaching and reintegration support for military service members.

The Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP) and Career Transition Assistance Plan (CTAP) provide eligible displaced Federal competitive service employees with selection priority over other candidates for competitive service vacancies. To be qualified you must submit appropriate documentation and be found well-qualified (have a final rating of 85 or more before any Veterans preference points) for this vacancy. Information about ICTAP and CTAP eligibility is on OPM's Career Transition Resources website at

Financial Disclosure Report: Not Required

This job opportunity announcement may be used to fill additional vacancies.

If you are unable to apply online or need to fax a document you do not have in electronic form, view the following link for information regarding an Alternate Application.

This job originated on For the full announcement and to apply, visit Only resumes submitted according to the instructions on the job announcement listed at will be considered.

Open & closing dates: 2017-08-09 to 2017-08-23

Salary: $22.71 to $26.49 / per hour

Pay scale & grade: WG 11

Series: 4742 Utility Systems Repairing-Operating

Appointment type: Permanent

Work schedule: Full-Time

Job announcement number: CARZ-10036026-17-BWS

Control number: 476538300