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Recruitment #18-WD8-01


The County of Santa Cruz is seeking to fill the Cannabis Licensing Manager position. The incumbent will implement the goals, strategies, policies and programmatic framework for the issuing of licenses through the Cannabis Licensing Program of the County. This position shall take the necessary steps to build and manage the Cannabis Licensing Program. The incumbent will evaluate the licensing of cannabis locations and issue/deny/revoke licenses based on guidelines. In collaboration with other departments, the incumbent will develop and promote a strong and compliant environment for cannabis and work with industry representatives across the County; and do other work as required.

This single position class is responsible for exercising a high degree of responsibility and independent judgment in the formulation and advancement of the Office of Cannabis Licensing and will serve as the County’s key licensing official. The incumbent reports directly to the Deputy County Administrative Officer. The incumbent provides direction and supervision to Cannabis Licensing Program staff, as well as any contract service providers. This position differs from lower classes due to its supervisory responsibility and high degree of independence and requires professional, administrative, and management skills.

Employment Standards

THE REQUIREMENTS: Any combination of training and experience that would provide the required knowledge and abilities is qualifying. A typical way to obtain the knowledge and abilities would be:

Equivalent to a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university in economics, business, finance, land use, or a closely related field. (A Juris Doctorate or Master’s degree in a related field is highly desirable.) 
Five (5) years of progressively responsible professional experience in public administration program development, experience in a municipal regulatory environment or at a state agency, or experience in a closely related field. A Master’s degree in a related field may be substituted for one (1) year of professional experience and a Juris Doctorate may be substituted for two years of professional experience.

SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: Possession of a valid California Class C Driver License or the ability to provide suitable transportation approved by the appointing authority.

Knowledge: Thorough knowledge of the principles and practices of program administration, business, government regulation and resources; principles of planning, including the general plan, zoning, and design review; and functions and relationships between private and public sector groups in the community. Working knowledge of laws pertaining to the Santa Cruz County Cannabis Licensing Program; State and local policies, laws, rules, and regulations relating to cannabis; office procedures and practices, including preparation of correspondence, reports and filing; record keeping procedures and practices; Federal, State and local land-use regulatory agencies; California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA); land-use planning principles, practices, and trends at the local level; business development and marketing; and taxation. Some knowledge of codes and regulations covering rural, residential, and commercial development; financial record keeping; principles and practices of supervision, training, and performance evaluation; principles and practices of conflict resolution; local government organizational structure, functions, and management; uniform building, plumbing, mechanical and electrical codes; and Bank Secrecy Act.

Ability to: Independently apply unbiased judgment through the direction of the Cannabis Licenses ordinances; read, interpret and apply zoning, environmental and building ordinances and related regulations, laws and other ordinances governing land use in an objective, accurate way; negotiate difficult, highly technical and/or complicated transactions; interpret and apply complex cannabis state and local policies, laws, rules, and regulations; analyze problems and identify alternative solutions, project consequences of license actions and implement recommendations in support of goals; stay abreast of medical findings regarding cannabis usage; follow and identify legislation on recreational cannabis usage; work effectively in time-sensitive situations to meet deadlines; understand and follow oral and written instructions; communicate clearly and effectively with the public in stressful situations; establish and maintain effective working relationships with cannabis business and patient community, the general public, officials, and personnel of other agencies; research regulations, procedures and/or technical reference materials relating to code enforcement; take initiative in carrying out direction and in formulating creative solutions to problems; review, analyze and interpret data and metrics; set targets for success and monitor progress; gather and evaluate facts and evidence and draw logical conclusions; work well individually and as a member of a professional and technical team; write clear, concise and comprehensive reports, correspondence, technical reports and program plans; make detailed presentations on complex issues to internal and community groups and decision making committees, commissions and boards; testify in administrative hearings and courts of law; synthesize complex case issues, ordinances and legal requirements relative to cannabis license cases and make recommendations for departmental actions; exercise sound independent judgment and demonstrate initiative and creativity, with minimal supervision; plan, direct, supervise and evaluate the work of assigned staff and contract service providers; evaluate and recommend changes to policies, practices, and procedures; communicate complex material clearly, logically, and concisely, both orally and in writing, including public presentations to large and small audiences.


VACATION - 16 days 1st year, increasing to 31 days per year after 15 years service. Available after 1 year service.
ADMINISTRATIVE LEAVE – One week advanced upon appointment; two weeks accrued each year; can be taken in cash or time off.
HOLIDAYS - 13 paid holidays per year.
SICK LEAVE - Six days per year.
BEREAVEMENT LEAVE - 3 days paid in California, 5 days paid out-of-state.
- The County contracts with CalPERS for a variety of medical plans. For most plans, County contributions pay a majority of the premiums for employees and eligible dependents.
DENTAL PLAN - County pays for employee and eligible dependent coverage.
VISION PLAN - The County pays for employee coverage. Employee may purchase eligible dependent coverage.
RETIREMENT AND SOCIAL SECURITY - Pension formula 2% at age 60 or 2% at age 62 as determined based on provisions of the CA Public Employees’ Pension Reform Act of 2013(PEPRA). Pension benefit determined by final average compensation of three years. County participates in Social Security.
LIFE INSURANCE - County paid $50,000 term policy. Employee may purchase additional life insurance.
- Plan pays 66 2/3% of the first $13,500, up to $9,000 per month maximum.
DEPENDENT-CARE PLAN - Employees who pay for qualifying child or dependent care expenses may elect this pre-tax program.
H-CARE PLAN - Employees who pay a County medical premium may elect this pre-tax program.
HEALTH CARE FLEXIBLE SPENDING ALLOWANCE (HCFSA) – Employees may elect this pre-tax program to cover qualifying health care expenses.
DEFERRED COMPENSATION - A deferred compensation plan is available to employees.

Selection Plan

THE EXAMINATION: Your application and supplemental questionnaire will be reviewed to determine if you have met the education, experience, training and/or licensing requirements as stated on the job announcement. If you meet these criteria and are one of the best qualified, you may be required to compete in any combination of written, oral and/or performance examinations or a competitive evaluation of training and experience as described on your application and supplemental questionnaire. You must pass all components of the examination to be placed on the eligible list. The examination may be eliminated if there are ten or fewer qualified applicants. If the eligible list is established without the administration of the announced examination, the life of the eligible list will be six months and your overall score will be based upon an evaluation of your application and supplemental questionnaire. If during those six months it is necessary to administer another examination for this job class, you will be invited to take the examination to remain on the eligible list.

HOW TO APPLY: Apply Online Now!  Click on the link below; or print out an application and supplemental questionnaire and mail/bring them to: Santa Cruz County Personnel Department, 701 Ocean Street, Room 510, Santa Cruz, CA, 95060.  For information, call (831) 454-2600.  Hearing Impaired TDD/TTY: 711.  Applications will meet the final filing date if received in one of the following ways:  1) in the Personnel Department by 5:00 p.m. on the final filing date, 2) submitted online before midnight of the final filing date. 


To comply with the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act, Santa Cruz County verifies that all new employees are either U.S. citizens or persons authorized to work in the U.S.

Some positions may require fingerprinting and/or background investigations.

NOTE: The provisions of this bulletin do not constitute an expressed or implied contract.

An Equal Opportunity Employer