Wanted: A green thumb with extensive knowledge of the black, or at least gray, market.

As Washington state tries to figure out how to regulate its newly legal marijuana, officials are hiring an adviser on all things weed: how it’s best grown, dried, tested, labeled, packaged and cooked into brownies.

Sporting a mix of flannel, ponytails and suits, dozens of those angling for the job turned out Wednesday for a forum in Tacoma, several of them from out of state. The Liquor Control Board, the agency charged with developing rules for the marijuana industry, reserved a convention center hall for a state bidding expert to take questions about the position and the hiring process.

“Since it’s not unlikely with this audience, would a felony conviction preclude you from this contract?” asked Rose Habib, an analytical chemist from a marijuana testing lab in Missoula, Mont.

The answer: It depends. A pot-related conviction is probably fine, but a “heinous felony,” not so much, responded John Farley, a procurement coordinator with the Liquor Control Board.

Washington and Colorado this fall became the first states to pass laws legalizing the recreational use of marijuana and setting up systems of state-licensed growers, processors and retail stores where adults over 21 can walk in and buy up to an ounce of heavily taxed cannabis.

Both states are working to develop rules for the emerging pot industry. Up in the air is everything from how many growers and stores there should be, to how the marijuana should be tested to ensure people don’t get sick…

The board has advertised for consulting services in four categories. The first is “product and industry knowledge” and requires “at least three years of consulting experience relating to the knowledge of the cannabis industry, including but not limited to product growth, harvesting, packaging, product infusion and product safety.”

Other categories cover quality testing, including how to test for levels of THC, the compound that gets marijuana users high; statistical analysis of how much marijuana the state’s licensed growers should produce; and the development of regulations, a category that requires a “strong understanding of state, local or federal government processes,” with a law degree preferred.

Someone send the federal government and our benighted political parties an email inviting them to try the same. We’ll invite the priests and pundits a century or two later.



  1. pedro says:

    Boy! Has this blog become tiresome & monothematic or what!

    Yawn!

  2. Uncle Patso says:

    What were we just talking about?

  3. Cap'n Kangaroo says:

    Would this be sorta of like the teenage hackers who go legit by working for a cyber-security firm or large corporation?

    • Cap'n Kangaroo says:

      I see a half-hour TV sitcom. Back country pot grower working in Capital City state bureaucracy. Antics ensue.

      Now, who do we cast as star and supporting characters?

  4. orchidcup says:

    I never thought I could apply for a job as a weed consultant some day.

    This is what I always wanted to be when I grew up.

    This job will merge well with my job as a sex therapist.

  5. bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist says:

    What would a knowledge of the black or grey market help any state regulatory official do? Thats not directly related to what they want advice on.

    So…an interesting study on how the gubment is doing its best to “help” an industry that doesn’t need it all all.

    In my own mostly uniformed mind, from watching shows about Amsterdam, what we need is more prostit….oops/no==that was a different subject. What we need is some labeling info on the strength of the weed? How many joints/puffs to send you to sleep or just get the munchies. Dose for pain control etc.

    Hard to imagine a HUGE black market not being supplied by the legal growers. And this is how “change” comes.

  6. sargasso_c says:

    Dream job.

  7. deowll says:

    The way this story is worded one might be tempted to assume these people are interested into getting into the exporting their new cash crop across state lines. Of course that would be illegal so I must have misunderstood.

  8. Dallas says:

    Boy held by wacko is safe!!
    Thank you Pres Obama for the federal authorities that report to you for the successful rescue of that child .

    God blessed Obama to enable a successful rescue. This is a time of pause to give thanks .

    • pedro says:

      Dayum! I was hoping you were the one holding the little kid. You cut my celebration short

  9. Glenn E. says:

    Once again, this reminds me a lot of the US Government’s (or Military’s) Operation Paperclip.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Paperclip

    When rocket science was suddenly deemed of value, in spite of exactly how that research was carried out. Like using concentratio camp, slave labor to do it. Or experimenting on non-voluntary human beings. Etc. And the military creatively found ways around Truman’s restrictions on importing ex-Nazis.

    So what’s the huge deal about giving some non-violent felons a job, that uses their expertise? It’s not like they ran death camps, or anything.

  10. SPOCK says:

    are john & adam still looking for supplementary consulting gigs?

  11. Rick says:

    Insert Tommy Chong joke here.