Chief Financial Officer

City of Santa Cruz , California

Job Information 



Mid Level


$117,084.00 - $158,472.00 Annually

Application Deadline 


07/23/2020 05:00 PM PDT

Recruitment Type 

Open Competitive


The Position

The above salary represents the regular salary for this position.  However, as a result of the financial impact to the City from the coronavirus, a 10% salary reduction and corresponding furlough is in effect through June 25, 2021 and will be re-evaluated prior to that date.

Under administrative direction serves as the Chief Financial Officer for the Santa Cruz Water Department responsible for all department financial planning activities. This includes financial modeling and forecasting, cash flow analyses and management, water revenue bond sales timelines, development of rates, fees and charges to support the department’s operating and capital programs, development of the department’s annual budget and capital improvement program, identifying, developing and submittal of grants to support implementation of capital projects, providing fiscal analyses and inputs for a full range of internal and external work products, working collaboratively with City Finance Department executive team, management and other staff and the Water Department staff to effectively manage the departments financial planning and management activities. 

The current opening is in the Water Department. The eligibility list established from this recruitment may be used to fill other Water Chief Financial Officer vacancies during the life of the list. The eligibility list established from this recruitment is valid for up to one year from the date established unless the list is extended or abolished by the Human Resource Director.

Interested candidates can learn more about the City of Santa Cruz Water Department by visiting  the Water Department's webpage

Recruitment # 21-001

Selection Timeline: (The following process may be changed as deemed necessary by the Human Resources Director.)

  • On Thursday, 07/23/20 recruitment will close. All application materials must be received by the Human Resources Department by 5:00 pm.  To apply, submit:
  1. Application - online application only. Resumes are not accepted in lieu of filling out the application form completely.  Click the Apply button to begin the online process.
  2.  Response to supplemental questions - will be a primary tool in the evaluation of your qualifications for this position. Any work experience described here must also be included in your employment history on the main application.
  •  Week of 07/27 and 08/03/20:  Applications will be competitively screened based on the minimum qualifications for this position. Once all applications have been reviewed applicants will be notified of their status in the recruitment.  The examination process may include an interview, written exam, and/or performance exam.  


Typical Duties


(May include, but are not limited to, those duties listed below).

  • Provides subject matter expertise to the Department's executive team on financial planning and analyses and organizational administration and management and proactively addresses long-term needs by evaluating rate structures, including water rates, service fees, and debt-financing and refinancing.
  • Develops and implements efforts to integrate and coordinate the Water Department’s financial planning and analysis work with the Department’s operating and engineering divisions and with other City departments.
  • Reviews financial analyses developed by consultants, departments or other agencies to verify their completeness and accuracy.
  • In collaboration with the Department’s executive team, develops and oversees the implementation of the annual Operation Division budget, works with the Deputy Directors for Operations and Engineering and Director of Water Department to develop and maintain a long-range financial plan that will support the Department's financial planning and analytical work for rates and fees.
  • In collaboration with the Department’s executive team, participates in the development of the Department's annual and 10-year Capital Improvement Program including advising on the financial implications of the plan and supporting plan development by providing financial analyses necessary to support decision-making.
  • Manages the debt financing program, including the issuance and management of long and short term debt financing; assures compliance with debt covenants and disclosures, coordinates required updates and presentations to debt rating agencies.
  • Assesses and monitors cash flow projections, cash forecast, and cash requirement needs. 
  • Contributes to the optimal management of capital, financial and human resources for Water Department to achieve its strategies and objectives
  • Contributes to the development and implementation of an effective and efficient business plan for the Water Department including identifying, evaluating and implementing opportunities for improving business functions, researching and recommending best management practices for the Department’s business functions, and developing a continuity of operations plan for the Department.
  • Contributes to development of the strategy, objectives, long-term and annual plans for Water Department by participating in the development and implementation of organization strategy and the creation of an organizational culture designed to support the delivery of high quality and necessary services to the community.
  • Presents information to the Santa Cruz City Council and City Council appointed Water Commission, and to community groups and citizens.
  • Contributes to the development and implementation of inter-divisional programs, services and protocols and the allocation of the optimal resources to departmental programs and services engaging in organization-wide priority setting, resource allocation, and decision-making to achieve departmental priorities.
  • Collaborates with the Deputy Directors for Engineering and Operations and other departmental staff on the development of an asset management program, including creating and applying a risk assessment/ risk management framework for prioritizing system rehabilitation and replacement efforts.
  • Collaborates with organizational managers and the Deputy Directors for Engineering and Operations to assess operational performance, identifies and implements continuous improvement efforts to improve financial planning, customer service, or operational efficiency and effectiveness.
  • Participates in the selection and training of organizational managers and staff.
  • Prepares technical and administrative reports and correspondence on behalf of the Department or for Department Director, Water Commission, City Manager, City Council and others.
  • Plans, directs and supervises assigned Water Department functions which may include business functions such as billing and customer service as well as organization-wide operations related to process improvement and operations analysis.
  • Develops proposals for generating revenues and reducing costs.
  • Represents the City in meetings with local, state and federal agencies; business and community groups and members of the public regarding financial matters.
  • Monitors and implements Government Accounting Standards Board (GASB) pronouncements, reviews, and assesses future fiscal impacts to the organization.
  • Designs and implements processes, as well as checks and balances, to strengthen financial operations, oversees ongoing financial disclosures and reporting, and assesses and makes revisions as needed to a diverse range of operating policies and procedures.
  • Expertly explains financial matters to a knowledgeable and actively engaged community.
  • Provides analysis and administrative support to the Water Department Director and other internal section and divisions. 
  • Participates in the analysis and interpretation of utility billing records and customer usage data.
  • Selects, trains, mentors, motivates and evaluates staff, meets with staff to identify and resolve problems; assigns projects and program areas of responsibility; reviews and evaluates work methods and procedures.
  • Attends and participates in professional group meetings; stays abreast of new trends and innovations and incorporates new developments into programs areas, as appropriate.
  • Performs other related duties that may be reasonably expected as part of this classification.


Position requires prolonged sitting, standing, walking, reaching, twisting, turning,
kneeling, bending, squatting and stooping in the performance of daily activities. The
position also requires grasping, repetitive hand movement and fine coordination in using a computer keyboard. Additionally, the position requires far and near vision when reading and using a computer. Acute hearing is required when providing phone and personal service. The need to lift, drag and push files, paper and documents weighing up to 25 pounds is also required. Some of these requirements may be accommodated for otherwise qualified individuals requiring and requesting such accommodations.



Minimum Qualifications

The minimum qualifications for Education, Experience, Knowledge, Skills and Abilities are the following:

Education and Experience:

  • Bachelor’s Degree from an accredited college or university in accounting, finance, business or public administration or a closely related field and,
  • Six (6) years of increasingly responsible, advanced level financial management experience which includes two (2) years of experience in municipal finance, and
  • Four (4) years supervisory experience.

Possession and continued maintenance of a valid California driver’s license and a safe driving record.

  • The principles, practices, tools and methods of long-range financial planning including financial forecasting, modeling, and the application of financial analyses to operational and capital planning.
  • Principles and practices of project management including developing and implementing project scopes, schedules, and budgets.
  • The concepts and practices of municipal governments including policies and procedures related to the operation of municipal governmental functions and fiscal management and personnel policies and procedures and the laws and regulations governing the financial operations of a local governmental agency.
  • Internal control and audit principles and practices.
  • Statistics and its application to financial and budget analyses and projections.
  • The principles and practices of leadership, management and supervision; including program planning, implementation, and administration, including the concepts and practices of executive level organizational leadership and management, including those related to internal and external communication, collaboration, strategic planning, problem-solving and decision-making, planning and prioritizing, and workforce development and succession planning.

  • Plan, coordinate, and direct the financial planning and management activities of an organization to achieve established goals, including developing revenue and expense projections and long-term financial forecasts, developing and overseeing implementation of a large budget, and collecting, interpreting and evaluating data effectively and objectively.
  • Contribute to the development and implementation of long-term capital improvement plans.
  • Maintain cooperative working relationships with Department leadership and staff, representatives of other departments, professional engineers, contractors, management staff, elected officials, citizen interests, and the general public.
  • Make presentations and represent the Department to Santa Cruz City Council, the Water Commission, and in various public or community forums.
  • Contribute to the process of analyzing and evaluating fiscal, operational or administrative problems, define issues and develop appropriate recommendations to resolve them.
  • Evaluate work priorities, procedures and processes and administrative issues to determine their effectiveness and efficiency and identify opportunities for improvement.
  • Effectively apply executive level organizational leadership and management skills including those related to communication, collaboration, strategic planning, problem-solving and decision-making, planning and prioritizing, and workforce development and succession planning.
  • Supervise personnel, including training, assigning and reviewing work, coaching, mentoring, administering discipline, and conducting performance evaluations.
  • Organize and manage projects and programs that meet targeted schedules and budgets and analyze problems, identify alternative solutions, project consequences of proposed actions, and implement recommendations in support of goals.
  • Interpret, understand, and apply provisions of technical reports, statutes, rules, and regulations.
  • Communicate effectively both orally and in writing.
  • Understand and ensure adherence to generally accepted accounting principles (GASB).
  • Read, analyze, and interpret financial reports.
  • Prepare clear and concise financial reports.
  • Interpret and explain policies and procedures effectively.
  • Develop and implement clear written policies and procedures.
  • Exercise good judgment and maintain confidentiality in maintaining critical, sensitive, and confidential information, records, and reports.

  • Master’s Degree in Accounting, Finance, Business or related field.
  • Finance/Accounting experience in a utility or water or wastewater agency.
  • Certified Public Accountant



Career Ladder

Water Director
Water Chief Financial Officer (CFO)
Finance Manager


No location specified