Cannabis: More Than High Hopes

by Monterey County, CA for the TLG 2019 Innovation Showcase program

Dec 19, 2018

Theme: Extensive Internal Collaboration

When cannabis became legal in California, we knew Monterey County, known as the Salad Bowl of the World, was well-positioned to capitalize on this newly legal agricultural crop. But we also knew that cannabis is an incredibly complex issue, affecting public health, the environment, law enforcement, agriculture, tax collection and other areas covered by County policy and practice.

The County’s elected Board of Supervisors and the County's Chief Administrative Officer support the industry’s potential in the County and formed the Monterey County Cannabis Program to ensure our policies and practices toward cannabis are best in class. The Program coordinates the efforts of 10 County departments, industry representatives, state regulators, the public and other stakeholders. One of our first tasks of the Cannabis Program was to create the strategic plan that included four primary goals, strategies to achieve each goal, performance measures and an implementation plan. We needed a compass, in the form of a vision, mission, goals, and strategies, to maximize the potential of the program, encourage its success, and protect the County from possible negative effects.

The mission of the Program is to “provide a local framework for successful leadership and management of commercial cannabis through coordination and collaboration with multiple County departments, state agencies, and local governments to address taxation, regulation, policy, enforcement, education and protection of the health, environment, and safety of our communities. Specific goals include supporting economic development in the County; protecting the environment, health and safety; ensuring compliance and enforcement; and generating revenue to support the program and services.

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