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Marijuana consultants wanted in Washington state

4:17 PM, Jan 31, 2013   |    comments
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By Eric Wilkinson

TACOMA, Wash. (KING/CNN) - It's not the kind of job posting you see every day. The state of Washington is looking for marijuana consultants.

That's right, pot experts to guide the state in developing retail sales, cultivation and even quality control.

With a preponderance of neck ties as opposed to tie-dyes, it looks more like a DEA conference than a gathering of pot lovers. The mood is decidedly sober, and the hardest thing on hand, is black coffee.

"I never thought that I would sit in the legal profession in my home state and watch us debate how to roll out a marijuana initiative," said James Evans, Strategy Consultant.

The Washington State Liquor Control Board is firing up the bidding process for officially sanctioned state marijuana consultants.

[Reporter]: "What sort of qualities are you looking for in a consultant?

"Well, each one has its own separate qualities," said John Farley.

[Reporter]: "I can eat an entire pizza in one sitting."

"Outstanding. Well then we might need ya," said Farley.

The presentation here is more mind numbing than mind expanding with 17 pages of rules for companies bidding on contracts, nearly 5,000 words like "procurement" and "performance requirements." The state is looking for people to guide them in areas such as cultivation, retail sale and quality control.

For the longest time, a lot of the folks here now looking for work with the state were on the outside looking in. Hassled by the feds. Busted by cops. Now, though, their rap sheets are their resumes.

"I kind of feel like war is over and now they've invited us to this grand hotel to give them advice on how to grow pot," said marijuana enthusiast Ben Carpenter.

With $900,000 allocated for state contracts this year alone, and all of America watching, no one here wants to see this opportunity go up in smoke.

"And if they do it well they'll be a model of excellence. If they don't well, they'll be a laughing stock," said Terry Dean Schmidt.

The state is taking requests for proposals through February 15.



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