Preparations for legal sales of recreational marijuana sales in California have impacted the state economy in many ways. Not all of this growth has occurred directly in the cannabis industry. The Concord Monitor reports that the state government is on a “hiring binge” to fill jobs for scientists, tax collectors, analysts and lawyers. Hundreds of positions have been created by the daunting task of regulating an entirely new industry – one which will immediately become the largest marijuana market in the country. Thousands more jobs are projected to be added by city, country, and local governments. But what, exactly, will these workers be doing?
The Scope of the Task of Regulation
Regulating an entire industry – let alone an industry on the scale of California’s marijuana market – takes volumes of work beyond the simple processing of business license applications. Background checks must be run on applicants. Environmental conditions must be monitored, such as the level of cannabis derivatives in streams near grow houses and farms. Enforcement, too, will be a large part of the work of state and local governments, which must ensure businesses operate within existing legal regulations, and that illegal operations are shut down. Each of these tasks requires a variety of professional expertise. Stream levels, for example, will require the input of environmental scientists to develop acceptable standards. Engineers must monitor groundwater and water diversion patterns. Environmental lawyers will be needed to help the state government resolve complex matters of environmental law that are created by the new grow operations. All of this is in addition to the administrative tasks of processing applications and issuing business licenses. Continue reading