King County, home to Seattle, will create a Cannabis Safety Task Force in the wake of recent dispensary robberies and violence. The goal is “to develop strategies to prevent criminal activity targeting cannabis businesses and address security concerns at cannabis businesses and to provide a report” to the county, according to council documents

That report is due no later than Aug. 31.

As KOMO News reports, the King County Sheriff’s Office and Prosecutor’s Office will work with local cannabis dispensary owners and community members to identify and distribute resources to help officers prevent robberies to any extent possible. Part of the intent of this task force is to expand on any cross-jurisdictional capabilities. 

This county legislation includes an immediate review of cannabis business tax revenue allocations. Some $4.6 million in cannabis tax revenue was diverted from the sheriff’s office’s budget this year, as KOMO reports. The task force will investigate the matter to determine where, exactly, those previously budgeted dollars have gone.

“A dedicated Cannabis Safety Taskforce will be able to focus on keeping our local communities safe from the pattern of armed robberies targeting cannabis stores and manufacturers across the region,” councilman Regan Dunn said in a public statement. “This legislation sends a strong message that King County plans to hold those committing these crimes responsible for their actions. I could not be more proud of this bipartisan legislation and am grateful to my colleagues for their support.”