Public Information Officer (Unclassified)



JOB CODE: 3070

PAY GRADE: 2280

SALARY RANGE: $55,098 - $92,726

LOCATION OF WORK
Various City-Parish Departments

GENERAL DESCRIPTION
Under the administrative direction of an employee of a higher classification, performs highly responsible work in administering a comprehensive public information program to provide positive information and service to the local citizenry, in addition to creating favorable publicity for the City-Parish government. The incumbent will be responsible for generating support for and understanding of the objectives, functions, and accomplishments of the City-Parish government. Work will also involve the planning and execution of public relations programs designed to procure favorable publicity for the City-Parish through such media as newspapers, radio, television, and magazines. This employee will write news releases and make arrangements for news conferences and press and television coverage of regular and special events concerning the local government including coordination of usage of the local government access cable television channel. Supervision is exercised over professional and clerical employees assisting in public information work. Work is reviewed and evaluated through periodic conferences and public response to information released. Performs other work as requested.

ESSENTIAL WORK TASKS
Plans and conducts new and existing informational programs or services designed to promote goodwill and understanding between the City-Parish government and the local public, using all local media. Gathers, writes, and edits material for news releases and speeches. Maintains complete and up-to-date research files to aid in writing speeches and news releases. Provides the public with information concerning the objectives, functions, accomplishments, and future goals of the City-Parish government. Arranges for news conferences and press and television coverage of special events such as dedications and groundbreakings involving the City-Parish government. Prepares, interprets, and distributes a wide variety of public information materials and departmental policies such as movies, slides, posters, brochures, charts, etc., to the media, the public, and other officials; arranges for and appears on regular and special local television programs. Works closely with the Parish Attorney and State Legislature regarding proposed legislation impacting and relating to city government; researches data detailing effects of legislation on the City-Parish governmental operations. Makes recommendations regarding release of sensitive material and issues to the public; maintains the highest degree of confidentiality. Coordinates all usage by the City-Parish government of the local governmental access channel on cable television. Creates, plans, implements, and monitors social media campaigns; develops content for social media platforms and electronic distribution. Prepares communication strategies and goals for City-Parish departments to include the areas of social media, public relations, media, community relations, and crisis management. Develops media strategies that promote a positive public image, organizing interviews between the press and executive staff; manages and alleviates any public relations crises which may occur. Prepares annual budget requests. Either performs personally or arranges for necessary photography work in connection with publications, news releases, or other related matters. Confers with City-Parish officials in planning public information programs, and provides any other assistance necessary in the area of public information. Speaks before the media, the public, and other officials on topics related to City-Parish government in an effort to generate interest and support. Meets with various school, civic, or business organizations on matters concerning City-Parish activities, to explain and develop a favorable response to the activities. Assembles all data, such as photographs, reports, and articles concerning accomplishments of the various City-Parish agencies, etc. to be used in preparing the East Baton Rouge Parish Yearly Review (Annual Report).

KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS, AND ABILITIES
Knowledge of all the various news media used in a comprehensive public information program. Knowledge of journalistic principles and practices, the techniques of planning, composing, and editing publicity and other material. Knowledge of English usage and the requirements of press, radio, and television broadcasters. Skill in the use of standard 35 mm and portrait type cameras and accessories. Ability to write and assemble interesting and informative news releases, pamphlets, brochures, scripts, and related publicity materials. Ability to plan and execute a complete public information program. Ability to assume delegated authority in assigned areas. Ability to maintain strict confidentiality of records and materials of a sensitive nature. Ability to analyze and edit informational material prepared by others. Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with the public, department heads, and the news media. Ability to express ideas clearly and concisely, orally and in writing, to groups and to individuals.

DESIRABLE QUALIFICATIONS

EDUCATIONAL AND EXPERIENCE
Bachelor's degree in business or public administration, public relations, journalism, English, or a closely related field, and four years of experience in a position in which the primary work assignment was public relations, planning, preparing, and disseminating information to the public through the news media such as positions with the press or television involving news writing, reporting, feature writing, or editing. Other positions involving full-time lecturing or advertising work also qualify.

CERTIFICATIONS / LICENSES / REGISTRATIONS
(Unless otherwise specified below, must possess at the time of appointment and must be maintained current throughout employment in this classification.) None.

OTHER JOB ASPECTS
None.


NOTE:
Unclassified job specifications may be revised at the will of the appointing authority.