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Job Title:
Maintenance Worker, WG-4749, Grade 8; $23.84 to $27.81 per hour
Type of Position:
Federal- Career/CareerConditional
Job Location:
Amado, Arizona
Posting Opening Date:
Posting Closing Date:

AREA OF CONSIDERATION:  This Merit Promotion position is open to Current Federal Employees and Former Federal Employees with permanent status or reinstatement eligibility. Individuals who are eligible for a special appointing authority may also apply such as Individuals with Disabilities (Schedule A), former Peace Corps, AmeriCorps, and Vista volunteers; certain Military Spouses, or individuals eligible under various programs for Veterans (VRA, VEOA, 30% disabled).


The Maintenance Worker will perform a variety of duties involved in the maintenance of the office complexes, laboratories, machine and automotive shops, dormitories, telescope buildings, and other ancillary structures at FLWO that are in 24 hour, 365 day/year operation; and the infrastructure associated with a remote site location including the mountain road and water storage systems.


  1. Performs a variety of duties in support of scientific projects and facilities and maintenance of the Observatory’s buildings, infrastructure, grounds, and mountain road, including the following:

    • Painting: Performs spray or brush painting of walls, ceilings, exterior of buildings, doors, window frames, siding, and trim. Masks surfaces preparatory to painting. Applies specialized coatings to roofs.

    • Carpentry: Performs rough or simple type carpentry in the repair and maintenance of buildings and related furnishings or structures. Duties may include framing, box construction, and concrete forms, making minor repairs such as replacing broken boards, nailing down loose wall siding, and caulking doors and window sills.

    • Welding: Welds parts used to repair such things as telescope structures, railings, or heavy equipment. Depending upon proficiency, may assist other staff members who are highly specialized welders.

    • Plumbing: Perform a variety of maintenance and repairs to the facility’s plumbing fixtures. Repair faucets, drains and toilets. Maintains waterless urinals. Utilizes specialized plumbing equipment to clean out sink/shower drains and pipes.

    • Roofing: Performs maintenance tasks such as patching leaky roofs and repairing flashing, masonry and concrete.

    2. Works cooperatively with scientific and other support staff on a variety of modifications and repairs to telescope facilities. This may include such tasks as repairing seams of a telescope, the telescope dome or its rotation motor assembly Assists Ridge Telescopes’ staff with changing telescope instruments.

    3. Operates heavy equipment such as forklifts, man lifts, front-end loaders, backhoes, cranes, etc. in open areas and on level, hilly and/or mountainous terrain to move earth, rocks, sand, stumps and other equipment. Operates snow plows and sanders in winter weather, transports optical and scientific equipment, and transports liquid nitrogen Dewars required for telescope instruments’ operation.

    4. Performs a variety of routine tasks such as delivery and pick-up of light and heavy objects at the Administrative Complex and mountain facilities, fueling all types of vehicles and heavy equipment on the mountain, and performing minor servicing of all types of vehicles and heavy equipment. Serves as an alternate driver for Tucson pick up of goods.

    5. Assists with cleaning debris and rocks from culverts (150) in the mountain road in cooperation with co-workers. Removal of fallen rocks is frequently required subsequent to rain storms and high winds.

    6. Drives a 30-passenger bus on the mountain road during the months that public tours of the telescope facilities are offered.

    7. Participates in maintenance of grounds as required, including tree trimming, weeding, and grass cutting on the mountain road or at the administrative complex.


Your overall experience and training must indicate that you have the minimum knowledge, skills, abilities needed to perform the duties of this position. There is no substitution of education for experience for this position. Qualification requirements must be met by the closing date of the announcement. Additional information on the Job Qualification System for Trades and Labor Occupations can be found on OPM's web site at

APPLICATION PROCEDURE We will only accept applications on line for this position.  For complete information about this position and the online application procedures, please visit:  USAJOBS


Conditions of Employment

You must be fully vaccinated for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) with Food and Drug
Administration (FDA) authorized or FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccine.


Have an approved Reasonable Accommodation granting an exemption from vaccine requirements.
Please see additional information regarding reasonable accommodations below.  
Additional Vacancy Language Regarding COVID-19

The Smithsonian Institution has a mandate requiring all employees (federal and trust), affiliated staff
(including volunteers, interns, and fellows), and the contractors who work with us to be fully vaccinated
against COVID-19 regardless of the employee’s duty location or work arrangement (e.g., onsite,
telework, remote work, etc.), subject to such exceptions as required by law. If selected, you will be
required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 and submit documentation of proof of vaccination by
November 22, 2021 or before appointment or onboarding with the Smithsonian Institution, if after
November 22. The Smithsonian Institution will provide additional information regarding what
information or documentation will be needed and how you can request a legally required exemption
from this requirement. This requirement applies to employees, affiliated staff, contractors who are
working on-site, and those teleworking in whole or in part. Limited exemptions to the Smithsonian
Institution’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate will be considered on a case-by-case basis for selected
candidates who inform the Smithsonian that they cannot be vaccinated because of a disability, including
certain medical conditions the Center for Disease Control (CDC) considers contraindications to the
vaccine, or because of a sincerely held religious belief, practice, or observance. Additional information
and instructions regarding Smithsonian’s COVID-19 mandate will be provided at the time of selection.


The Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory is an equal opportunity employer committed to diversity in our workplace

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Learn more about SAO Human Resources

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