Maybe. I’ve read the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act several times with an eye toward how we’d execute it’s requirements in case it passes.  One of the key decisions is figuring our which of our areas is in the best position to get the job done.  I think the best place is Vital Records– at least for issuing the cards.  Why?  Because their business operations, work flow, verification policies, and their cash management systems most closely match the business requirements in 203 for processing medical marijuana cards.  They’ve also demonstrated that they can handle high volume and more than a dozen different kinds of vital records.  For example, they sold 93,662 birth certificates and 13,867 death certificates last fiscal year, all while ensuring that each sale met very specific criteria.  All of which will be critical when issuing medical marijuana cards given that fact that we could be issuing 100,000 cards/year by 2013.

Vital Records would most likely be issuing the cards (if it passes), but our ITRules, and Procurement Teams (with help from our Attorney General team) will be absolutely critical in order to hit the ground running.  We’d only have 120 days to get the program going, which means that we’ll need rock-solid rules (Administrative Code) and a completely functioning (and paperless) IT system on day one in order to manage the workflow by the end of March.

If Prop 203 passes, the only way we could possibly handle the workload is to make the application process completely electronic from beginning to end. If we do it right, we may be able to do it almost all on-line and without window service.

P.S. I haven’t figured out who’s in the best position to regulate the dispensaries yet, but Environmental Health’s in the lead.