Exam Bulletin - Coastal Program Manager

CA Coastal Commission

Exam Code: EX-1631

Examination Plans Included:


Final Filing Date: Applications are accepted on a continuous basis.

Classification Details

COASTAL PROGRAM MANAGER: $8,180.00 - $10,164.00 per Month

View the COASTAL PROGRAM MANAGER classification specification.

Application Instructions

This is not a timed examination. If you request a Reasonable Accommodation, your account will be locked and you will not be able to proceed with the examination until the request is processed.

Applications are accepted on a continuous basis.

Who Should Apply:

The information below will help you determine which classification(s) is(are) appropriate for you. Applicants must meet the Minimum Qualifications as stated on this bulletin to compete in this examination.

Open and Open, Non-Promotional Examination(s):


For all Classifications, once you have participated in any of the following examinations, you may not recompete for 12 months:

Exam Code(s):


For COASTAL PROGRAM MANAGER, once you have participated in any of the following examinations, you may not recompete for 12 months:

Exam Code(s):

  • EX-01631

How To Apply:

Submit an Examination/Employment Application (STD 678) to apply for this examination.

Electronic applications can be submitted through your account at www.CalCareers.ca.gov.

Special Testing Arrangements:

If you require assistance or alternative testing arrangements due to a disability, indicate on your application that you need reasonable accommodation. You will be contacted by a representative of the testing department to make the necessary arrangements. If you have not been contacted by the time you receive notification of testing, please contact the testing department listed in the Contact section of this bulletin.

If you are unable to submit your application or complete the test due to a disability, please contact the testing department listed in the Contact section of this bulletin.

Minimum Qualifications

All applicants must meet the education and/or experience requirements as stated on this exam bulletin to be accepted to the examination.

Unless otherwise stated in the Minimum Qualifications, qualifying experience may be combined on a proportionate basis if the requirements stated below include more than one pattern and are distinguished as "Either" 1, "or" 2, "or" 3, etc. For example, applicants possessing qualifying experience amounting to 50% of the required time of Pattern 1 and additional experience amounting to 50% of the required time of Pattern 2 may be accepted to an examination as meeting 100% of the overall experience requirement.


Either 1

One year of experience in California state service performing coastal planning, managing or development duties in a class at a level of responsibility equivalent to Coastal Program Analyst III. (Promotional candidates who are within six months of satisfying the experience requirement for this class will be admitted to this examination, but they must fully meet the experience requirement before being eligible for appointment.)

Or 2

Two years in California state service performing coastal planning, managing or development duties in a class at a level of responsibility equivalent to Coastal Program Analyst II. (Promotional candidates who are within six months of satisfying the experience requirement for this class will be admitted to this examination, but they must fully meet the experience requirement before being eligible for appointment.)

Or 3

Experience: Five years of experience, one year of which shall have been in a supervisory capacity, in planning, managing or regulating uses of land or water which must have included substantial technical review of permit applications or the formulation of plans that relate to the environmental impact of proposed development; or five years of experience providing special technical and research assistance in environmental resource management programs. (A Master's or Doctoral Degree in Urban, Regional or Environmental Planning, Ecology, Marine Biology, Geology, Geography, Coastal Management, Environmental Science, Natural Resource Management, Public Policy or a related field; or a Juris Doctor degree from an accredited law school may be substituted for one year of the general experience requirement. Both substitutions may be applied. Postgraduate educational substitution for experience may not exceed two years.) and

Education: Equivalent to graduation from college. (Additional qualifying experience may be substituted for the required education on a year-for-year basis.)

Position Description


This is typically the full supervisory and program management level. Under general direction, incumbents plan, organize, direct and are accountable for, programs in either the headquarters office or a district office which are of major significance and are sensitive and complex. Incumbents at this level may (1) supervise a small staff, or (2) supervise a larger staff with the assistance of subordinate supervisors.

Additional Desirable Qualifications

In appraising the relative qualifications of candidates at all levels, consideration will be given to the extent and type of pertinent education and/or experience beyond that required under "Minimum Qualifications". Experience and/or college level courses in coastal or ocean resource management, coastal or ocean resources, wetlands studies, planning and zoning law in California or similar fields are particularly pertinent.

Coastal Program Analyst III and Coastal Program Manager candidates who demonstrate an ability to independently conduct complex and difficult technical investigations and studies on issues of importance to the State will be considered more competitive.

For information regarding position location(s), please refer to the Eligible List Information section.

Examination Information

We recommend using Chrome, Firefox, or Edge for optimal performance when accessing the examination.

This examination consists of the following component(s):

Component OrderComponent TypeComponent DuePercentage of Final Score
1CalHR Online ExamN/A100%

A final score of 70% must be attained to be placed on the eligible list.

In addition to evaluating the applicant's relative knowledge, skill and ability as demonstrated by quality and breadth of education/experience, emphasis in each test component will be on measuring competitively, relative to job demands, each applicant's:

Knowledge of:
  1. Principles, practices, terms and concepts of urban, economic, resources, social, legal, and regional planning
  2. Public policy development
  3. Current trends and applications in Federal, State and local planning
  4. Administrative, land use and environmental law
  5. Permit review and zoning procedures
  6. Techniques of planning, controlling, motivating and organizing the work of others
  7. Principles of personnel management, public relations and administration
  8. Modern office methods, technology and procedures
  9. The objectives of the State's Affirmative Action Program
  10. A supervisor's role in the Affirmative Action Program and the processes available to meet affirmative action objectives
Ability to:
  1. Analyze situations accurately and take effective action
  2. Effectively and convincingly communicate in written and verbal form complex and controversial matters to individuals and groups
  3. Analyze and evaluate written, graphic and verbal data and prepare complete and comprehensive reports
  4. Inspire confidence and trust
  5. Establish and maintain effective and cooperative relations with those contacted in the course of work
  6. Exercise common sense and good judgment
  7. Lead the work of other staff on a project and work independently
  8. Plan, organize and supervise the work of a professional staff
  9. Train staff and motivate subordinates to accomplish organizational goals
  10. Effectively contribute to the Commission's affirmative action objectives
  11. Develop innovative solutions for difficult environmental or coastal management problems
  12. Provide leadership in accomplishing basic functions and objectives in assigned programs
  13. Inspire confidence and effective working relationships with employees, managers and leaders in the public and private sector
  14. Plan and implement public participation programs and apply conflict resolution principles

Eligible List Information

A Departmental Open eligible list for the COASTAL PROGRAM MANAGER Classification will be established for:

  • CA Coastal Commission

The names of successful competitors will be merged onto the eligible list(s) in order of final score regardless of test date. Eligibility expires 12 months after it is established. Applicants must then retake the examination to reestablish eligibility.

Resulting Eligibility List(s) will be used to fill vacancies throughout the State of California.

Veterans' Preference will be granted for this examination. Veterans' Preference is an assistance program for veterans, veteran widows and widowers, and spouses of 100% disabled veterans who seek employment with the state. Veterans' Preference is also extended to currently serving military members nearing their retirement or separation date.

You are not eligible for Veteran's Preference if you are:

  • A veteran who has been dishonorably discharged or released.
  • A veteran, widow or widower of a veteran, or spouse of a 100 percent disabled veteran who currently has permanent civil service status. (Permanent civil service status is the status of an employee who is lawfully retained in his/her position after completion of the applicable probationary period. This does not include limited term).

Veterans' Preference is codified in Government Code Sections 18973 – 18979.

Veteran status is verified by the California Department of Human Resources (CalHR). Directions to apply for Veterans' Preference are on the Veterans' Preference Application (Std. Form 1093), which is available at www.CalCareers.ca.gov, and the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Career Credits are not granted for examination(s) administered on an Open basis or a Promotional basis.

Coastal Program Manager Training and Experience Examination Preview

Rate your experience performing specific job-related tasks.

Respond to each of the following statements by indicating how the statement applies to you. You are required to respond to every question and provide relevant examples. Also, indicate the references who can verify the information provided.

In responding to each statement, you may refer to your WORK EXPERIENCE, whether paid or volunteer, your EDUCATION, and/or FORMAL TRAINING COURSES you have completed.

PLEASE NOTE: This examination is designed to gain an overall assessment of your education, training, and experience as it directly relates to the duties and the knowledge, skills and abilities required for this position. Possession of specific education is not required to be successful in this examination; however, such achievements may substitute for desirable levels of experience. All components of this examination have been carefully validated by tying them directly to job requirements and documenting their relevance to the position.

  1. Supporting staff, colleagues, or interns in the preparation of written recommendations that are clear and persuasive on various matters including but not limited to: natural resource planning, policy, regulatory issues, or long-range planning (e.g., development permits, appeals, Federal consistency reviews, energy and ocean programs, enforcement matters, grants).
  2. Presenting, discussing, and/or explaining an organization’s recommendations, purposes, policies, and/or procedures with individuals, groups, and/or decision-making bodies with various levels of understanding.
  3. Supporting or guiding staff, colleagues, or interns in performing their more complex duties to help guide them in problem solving and/or decision making related to their projects and ensure the work is done correctly and in a timely manner.
  4. Providing formal or informal on-the-job training to colleagues or interns relating to the tasks performed on the job.
  5. Coordinating and negotiating with developers, violators, government staff, or other members of the public in a constructive or professional manner to achieve a positive resolution.
  6. Developing recommendations regarding special issues or problems for which the policies or procedures are ambiguous or do not specify a clear course of action, or for which there is little or no guiding precedent.
  7. Managing the workload of a program or staff to ensure the work is completed in a timely and efficient manner.
  8. Reviewing or monitoring the work of staff, consultants, or interns to ensure it meets quality or timeliness standards and to identify areas for improvement.
  9. Providing feedback to staff or interns to improve their performance or aid in their professional development.
  10. Developing and overseeing the implementation of new policies, procedures, or programs.
  11. Acting as a technical subject matter expert for various agencies or organizations when colleagues, stakeholders, or other decision makers are seeking input or advice.

Testing Departments

  • CA Coastal Commission

Contact Information

Technical questions regarding this examination should be directed to:

California Department of Human Resources
CalCareer Service Center
1810 16th Street
Sacramento, CA 95811
Phone: (866) 844-8671

Administrative questions regarding this examination should be directed to:

California Coastal Commission
Human Resources
455 Market Street, Suite 300
San Francisco, CA 94105
Phone: (415) 904-5430

California Relay Service: 1-800-735-2929 (TTY), 1-800-735-2922 (Voice). TTY is a Telecommunications Device for the Deaf, and is reachable only from phones equipped with a TTY Device.

Equal Opportunity Employer

The State of California is an equal opportunity employer to all, regardless of age, ancestry, color, disability (mental and physical), exercising the right to family care and medical leave, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, marital status, medical condition, military or veteran status, national origin, political affiliation, race, religious creed, sex (includes pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding and related medical conditions), and sexual orientation.

Drug Free Statement

It is an objective of the State of California to achieve a drug-free State work place. Any applicant for State employment will be expected to behave in accordance with this objective, because the use of illegal drugs is inconsistent with the law of the State, the rules governing civil service, and the special trust placed in public servants.

General Information

Examination and/or Employment Application (STD 678) forms are available at the California Department of Human Resources, local offices of the Employment Development Department, and through your CalCareer Account (www.CalCareers.ca.gov).

If you meet the requirements stated on this examination bulletin, you may take this examination, which is competitive. Possession of the entrance requirements does not assure a place on the eligible list. Your performance in the examination described in this bulletin will be rated against a predetermined job-related rating, and all applicants who pass will be ranked according to their scores.

CA Coastal Commission reserves the right to revise the examination plan to better meet the needs of the service, if the circumstances under which this examination was planned change. Such revision will be in accordance with civil service laws and rules and all applicants will be notified.

General Qualifications: Applicants must possess essential personal qualifications including integrity, initiative, dependability, good judgment, the ability to work cooperatively with others, and a state of health consistent with the ability to perform the assigned duties of the class. A medical examination may be required. In open examinations, investigation may be made of employment records and personal history and fingerprinting may be required.

Eligible Lists: Eligible lists established by competitive examination, regardless of date, must be used in the following order: 1) sub-divisional promotional, 2) departmental promotional, 3) multi-departmental promotional, 4) service-wide promotional, 5) departmental open, 6) open. When there are two lists of the same kind, the older must be used first. Eligible lists will expire in one to four years unless otherwise stated on the bulletin.

High School Equivalence: Equivalence to completion of the 12th grade may be demonstrated in any one of the following ways: 1) passing the General Education Development (GED) Test; 2) completion of 12 semester units of college-level work; 3) certification from the State Department of Education, a local school board, or high school authorities that the competitor is considered to have education equivalent to graduation from high school; or 4) for clerical and accounting classes, substitution of business college work in place of high school on a year-for-year basis.

Accepted applicants must provide proof of identification at each in-person test session. Acceptable identification consists of a photo identification card or two forms of signed identification.

Application Methods:
Electronic (Your CalCareer Account)