Denver approves plan to increase staff to enforce marijuana regulations

DENVER - The City Council signed off Monday night on Mayor Michael Hancock's plan to increase marijuana enforcement staffing using new tax proceeds.

The $3.4 million plan will add 21 full-time employees and a part-time worker — all geared toward keeping up with the need for building, fire, health and food safety inspections and other marijuana regulation work.

Some money will go to departments handling licensing, lab testing and police investigations, and some will go toward public-outreach campaigns.

City officials waited until after legal recreational sales began Jan. 1 to put together the proposal. They kept tabs on the first several months of new tax collections and sized up the new industry's impact on city resources.

The money will come from $5 million of projected proceeds this year from the city's new voter-enacted 3.5 percent cannabis sales tax, plus Denver's share of a 10 percent state special retail marijuana tax.

Read more about the new jobs from our partners at the Denver Post: http://www.denverpost.com